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The Crocodile (or bobcat) Next Door: New (2010) Oregon Exotic Pets Law

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The Oregonian ran a story about the new law, 2009 SB 391 (HTML version), which will go into effect January 1, 2010: “Exotic Pets: bad idea, soon to be illegal.” (Online version: New Oregon law will clamp down on exotic pet ownership), by Jacques Von Lunen, Tuesday July 21, 2009):

Excerpt: “The four cats hiss fiercely as we approach their enclosure. When we go inside, two of them circle around to the opposite corner. It’s unnerving, because these cats are no tabbies.

They’re servals, African wildcats. The largest weighs close to 40 pounds. Their long legs make them excellent runners and jumpers; some call them the most efficient predators of all cats….
….
Many humans seduced by servals’ looks find they’re dealing with wild animals after all.

“We get about one call per month on servals,” says Cheryl Tuller, co-founder of WildCat Haven. “These owners realized quickly it was a big mistake.”

Typically, people are lured by a kitten’s playfulness and cute looks but aren’t prepared for the demands of an adult. “At about one year, things start to change,” Tuller says. “You can’t take (the wild) out of them.”

This is obvious when Tuller’s puppy, Maddy, shows up at the fence. Two servals dart toward him, and they don’t look like they want to play….” (Read full article.)

The bill became Chapter 642 of the Oregon Laws when the Governor signed it on June 24, 2009: Relating to exotic animals; creating new provisions; and amending ORS 609.305, 609.309, 609.312, 609.315, 609.319 and 609.335.

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