Big Government Hates Your Pets

April 14, 2009

Could your pets be outlawed?

If you own a hamster, gerbil, lizard, ferrets, exotic fish, snakes, birds or most any pet other than a dog or cat, your rights as a pet owner could be seriously affected. On April 23, Congress’ National Resource Committee will hold a hearing on The Nonnative Wildlife Invasion Prevention Act, also known as H.R. 669.

Under H.R. 669, animals not native to the U.S. would be required to be placed on a list of ‘approved’ or ‘unapproved’ species. The lists would be created by the Fish and Wildlife Service. This already undermanned organization would be required to complete the lists within a short period of time.

If this bill passes, some of the implications would likely include:

  • The inability to take your pet across state lines, even when moving or traveling to a specialized veterinarian.
  • A ban on breeding, selling or trading your pet. This would include most birds, fish, lizards, many small pets, such as hamsters many rodents, guinea pigs, reptiles, etc.
  • The costs to the American public would be extravagant. The money needed to fund such an undertaking would come from our tax dollars. (Aren’t we supposed to be fiscally responsible right now?) Pet stores, specialty veterinarians, feed stores and pet boutiques would certainly see a loss of profits and many would be forced to close.
  • Unfortunately, I believe there would be no other choice but for animal service organizations to euthanize animals classified as nonnative, because it would be illegal to rehome banned animals.

    Although there are intelligent ways to control and prevent the release of nonnative animals into the ecosystem, this bill is not well thought out or planned. The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission lists 118 native species currently endangered, threatened or of special concern. Most responsible Florida citizens care about our wildlife, but there has to be another way to protect our natural habitats without banning our pets!

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