Pennsylvania Deliberates Strict Exotic Pet Laws


Pennsylvania is considering joining the ranks of the many States that have adopted strict exotic pet laws that are designed to protect the public in the event these animals were to get loose. We are not just talking about cute little furry animals but lions, tigers, coyotes, bears, bobcats, leopards, cougars, cheetahs and primates.

The Human Society of the United States is asking the PA Senate to pass a bill that would stop the possession of these dangerous animals.

Currently, it is legal to own and keep a wild pet in Pennsylvania provided you have purchased the appropriate permit(s) for the Pennsylvania Game Commission. You don’t even have to notify your neighbors, police or the local schools in your area that you have a potentially dangerous animal on your property. According to the Humane Society, no one is keeping tabs on the situation

According to the Humans Society, while conducted an undercover investigation they uncovered the dangerous breeding of wild animals, tiger deaths and problems involving the public by a company called GW Exotic Animal Park in Wynnewood, Oklahoma.

In 2008, GW Exotics shipped two 11-week-old tiger cubs to the Genesis Wildlife Center in NayAug Park in Scranton, Pennsylvania…about a year before GW Exotics closed down. “The tigers from GW Exotics may now be living in a Pennsylvania backyard,” said Sarah Speed, Pennsylvania state director for the Humane Society. “We should not wait until another tragedy occurs before adopting strict standards in the law. Pennsylvania’s lawmakers should act swiftly to pass this bill to protect residents and prevent animals from suffering in backyards and basements.”

There have been reported attacks in the past that make this legislation important for public safety reasons. In 2009, Kelly Ann Waltz of Monroe County, Pennsylvania was attacked and killed by her pet bear while cleaning the bear’s concrete enclosure. Waltz also had permits to own a Bengal tiger and an African lion.

Earlier, APN reported that Ohio is also considering legislation that would ban the possession of dangerous wild animals. The Pennsylvania House Bill 1398 is being sponsored by Representative Edward Staback, D-Lackawanna/Wayne Counties.


  1. Sounds like ‘Big Brother’ at work to me! Sure, perhaps rules and regulations governing exotic animal ownership of animals that absolutely do not belong in the private sector; animal species with a reputation for being dangerous or lethal. To group all exotic animals into one category is the lazy man’s out and too imposing on people, in general. Where is the line going to be drawn between our rights as citizens in the United States and the Government dictating our every whim with consequences? Not fair; and, I don’t like it at all; and, neither should you. If people do not unite and take a stand to protect themselves against Government enactments, we, the people of the United States will eventually become victims of a dictatorship, our Government. The Government cannot even control themselves; so, why allow them to get into our business? I feel the same way about State Governments. We are allowing the Governments to herd us around like sheep, and doing nothing to stop their interference in our rights as citizens in what is suppose to be a free Country. Agreed and accepted, regulations of animals that plainly do not belong in a private home should be scrutinized; but again, to lump all exotic species under one big umbrella is just plain stupid! All the Government is doing is making its’ citizens go underground to get away from its’ control, because if someone wants an illegal pet, they’re going to do whatever it takes to have what they want. There has to be a compromise between the entities of you and me. Use your brains people! Fight for your rights.

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