Essay: Leave Exotic Animals in the Wild!

Most people have a natural attraction to animals.  If you ask your neighbors how they feel about pets, you will find that several of them consider themselves pet lovers.  Some of the pets you might find in your neighborhood are dogs, cats, birds, and fish.  However, some people are so captivated with animals that there are no limits to what they would consider a pet. In the case of exotic animals as pets, many go to great lengths and pay high prices to bring home an animal without considering the safety of humans, the animal’s wellbeing, and the effects to the environment.

Imagine paying $8,000 to bring home a baby tiger, this is the price according to the Collections textbook. Such animals that are intended to live free in the wild carry diseases and parasites that are contagious to humans.  According to the, some of the disease that exotic animals carry are rabies, herpes B, and Salmonella.  Monkeys are often seen as cute animals with great potential for domestication.  Unfortunately, according to the macaque monkey commonly carries herpes B virus which is 70% fatal to humans.  Human contact with reptiles is responsible with 70,000 cases of salmonellosis (common cause of food poisoning) each year.  Birds also carry psittacosis (a contagious disease of birds, to human beings as a form of pneumonia.), which is fatal to humans.

Furthermore, aside from the potential risk of catching a disease, they can cause physical harm that can result in death.  On the site there is mention of several cases where exotic pets lashed out on the owners.  Such as, “A lion killed several dogs and trapped a child in his room, and a Bengal tiger tore off a 4-year old’s arm.”  In recent years, the story of Charla Nash made national news when her friend’s chimpanzee attacked her.  The chimpanzee was her friend’s pet for years he even worked as an animal actor.  Though his owner trained him and it seemed he was domesticated, one day he lashed out and he tore off Charla’s face and hands.  Charla has had face transplants and cannot see.  Another example on is a case where a family’s pet python strangled a 3-year old boy.  It is evident that even though we want to believe that we can tame these wild animals, no matter how early in their life you begin training, their natural instincts can one day kick in and you or your loved ones may lose their lives.

Moreover, the well-being of these animals is rarely taken into account.  These animals have special needs, they require special care, housing, diet and maintenance.  These animals suffer when they are removed from their natural habitat.  Not only do they react to the change of environment but the traders often transport them and house them in poor conditions.  According to, “parrots may have their beaks and feet taped to be stuffed into plastic tubes that can easily be hidden in luggage…infant pythons have been shipped in CD cases.  Many die before reaching their destination.” Unfortunately, an animal lover may have the best intentions but may fail to provide the right nutrition care for these animals.  “The head of the Environmental Crime unit in Western Cape in Africa, estimates that 90% of exported reptiles die within a year.”  There are countless examples of animals not handled properly by their owners, these animals survive in the wild yet die at the hands of human owners.

Lastly, the environment is affected when pet owners make the mistake of releasing them back into the wild.  When a pet owner decides that the little python they thought was so cute grew too big for the enclosure they have at home, they often release them into the wild without considering the effects to the pet and the environment.  According to, these animals rarely survive.  They find themselves in an eco-system that is not their own.  Unfortunately, this not only affects the pet it also affects the balance of the eco-system they are left in.  The Burmese python has greatly affected our very own eco-systems here in Florida.  Since the 1980s, they have become an invasive species in Florida, they tend to grow up to 9 feet long.  In the Everglades National Park over 2,000 pythons have been removed.  Researchers believe that they are responsible for the decrease in bobcats, rabbits and opossums in the Everglades.

In conclusion, it is our job to do the right thing and keep exotic animals in the wild where they belong.  Although, there could be benefits from having exotic pets, the danger outweighs the benefit.  I believe exotic animals are not pets because they put the safety of humans in danger, the animal’s wellbeing, and the effects to the environment.



Brainstorming: Exotic Animals Are Not Pets Essay

Topic:             Exotic Animals Are Not Pets

Essay Type:    Argumentative

Reasons:         Safety of humans, the animal’s wellbeing, and the effects to the environment.

Claim:             Exotic Animals Are Not Pets

Elaboration:   In the world today, exotic animals can harm people.

Counter Claim:          Although there could be benefits from having exotic pets, the danger outweighs the benefit.











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