Pets can add fun, love, and laughter to any family, but there if there is any downside to the pet business, it’s the trade and sale of exotic animals. Each year, millions of these animals are smuggled into backyards and homes all over America. There are seven animals in particular that your child might come into contact with the next time he or she goes to visit a friend, and the results could be tragic.
Many people own small monkeys, including Rhesus and Capuchin monkeys. These monkeys, while they are cute and intelligent, can also become aggressive.
They can deliver a painful bite and will do so to defend their territory.
While chimpanzees have high intelligence, males can be extremely territorial and strike out without warning.
They can inflict devastating and even deadly physical damage with their teeth, and they have powerful arms and hands. Chimps also carry a number of dangerous diseases, including polio and the herpes B virus.
While smaller snakes have been domesticated, some people enjoy having large constrictors in their homes, especially pythons.
These larger snakes, while they are not venomous, can deliver a deep and painful bite. Even more dangerous is their ability to constrict babies and small children, a grisly incident that has happened repeatedly across the country.
Monitor lizards and other large lizards have enough bacteria in their mouths that their bites often cause serious sickness and even death
. They will often defend their territory with their teeth and claws, and most reptile species carry dangerous diseases, such as salmonella. Pet alligators can attack without warning, causing the loss of a limb or even death.
Big cats, such as tigers, bobcats, and even lions, are secretly kept in backyard cages all over America. These animals are usually always caged and highly aggressive.
Even when caged, they can lash out with a paw and inflict a fatal wound in a child. Others can escape their homemade enclosures and attack without provocation.
While not officially classified as exotic pets, dog-wolf hybrids can grow to an extremely large size and be quite unpredictable.
Even if their owners have raised them from puppyhood, their wild genes can make them predisposed to wild behavior, such as stalking and hunting. This poses a massive danger to any young children who might enter the property.
While these rodents aren’t large, the female of the species can become aggressive and attack when she is in heat.
They can inflict a painful bite when they are not raised to be social or brought out of the wild too late in their lives. If not given enough attention, their behavior can turn aggressive and they will be impossible to handle.
These animals can also carry dangerous parasites, such as fleas and ticks, which can be transferred to humans. Exotic pets may be eye catching and thrilling to own, but they can also be dangerous to anyone who ventures too close.