Exotic-Pet Owners Take a Laissez-faire Approach to Their Wild Animals

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May we come home with you?
May we come home with you? Photo: Bear: Peupleloup's flickr ; Capuchin: AlphaTangoBravo/Adam Baker's flickr

It is perhaps unsurprising to note that people who decide to take exotic animals out of the wild and house them as guests in their homes and B&Bs don't place a lot of value on responsibility. But the lack of accountability is getting troubling. Sam Mazzola, the owner of a black bear who killed its 24-year-old caretaker last week, could be evicted for failing to buy accident insurance for the "bears, wolves and possibly a lion and a few tigers" that lived on his property in northeast Ohio. A zoo in your backyard — what could go wrong? This reminds us of that piece from the Times last year that showed primate owners treating their capuchins and chimps like spoiled children, often at the expense of their human offspring. Indeed, one of the capuchins from that story has been implicated in the latest animal crime wave. Painter Allen Hirsch's capuchin, Benjamin, took a giant bite out of the face of one of the guests at Hirsch's upstate New York B&B. Hirsch, who neglected to turn over his monkey, is hiding out in South America. Benjamin, the fame whore, is currently at large, clearly trying to wring out his fifteenth minute.

Eviction notice goes to owner of Ohio killer bear [Las Vegas Sun]
Monkey Attacks Tourist in B&B; Is "on the Lam" [CBS]