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Exotic Pets

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NEWS
April 14, 1987 | By Larry Lewis, Inquirer Staff Writer
John O'Reilly would hand-feed raw chicken to the creature in the basement of his father's Pottstown tuxedo shop as he watched it grow from eight inches to five feet. He called it simply The Gator. The slow-moving, sun-loving reptile outgrew a glass tank in the store, so O'Reilly filled a sunken spot in the dark, unused basement with about five inches of water and made a pond. A few alligator-lengths away, he spread sand and lit the imitation beach with a sunlamp. "He would eat his food in the water," O'Reilly said.
NEWS
November 23, 1989 | By Larisa Kuntz, Special to The Inquirer
By now, Beverly Oliver is used to the look of alarm on customers' faces when closing time nears at Charlie's Discount Pet Center in Montgomeryville. Somehow, the prairie dogs know it's time to doze. One will lie flat on its back, paws pointing skyward. "One of your prairie dogs is dead," customers timidly tell her. No, she assures them, it's just sleeping. Sure enough, by 9 p.m., all the prairie dogs are asleep in the same position in a corner of their glass cage. In the Philadelphia area, prairie dogs have joined ferrets and miniature pigs as exotic pets.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 25, 2011 | BY DANIELLE MIESS, miessd@phillynews.com 215-854-5444
ON WHAT should have been an ordinary Wednesday in Zanesville, Ohio, last week, school was canceled and residents were urged to stay in their homes. Fifty dangerous animals - lions, bears, wolves and cheetahs - had been set loose by private owner Terry Thompson before he committed suicide. Local law enforcement later killed most of the aggressive animals before they could harm members of the community. As rare and shocking as this story was, people who own exotic pets are not so unusual.
NEWS
November 28, 1994 | By Laura Genao, INQUIRER CORRESPONDENT
Holiday shoppers weren't just cramming the malls this weekend. About 9,000 people sought out everything from African pygmy hedgehogs to microwaveable bird food at the second annual Exotic Pet Showcase at the Valley Forge Convention Center. "There are a lot of different people that come to something like this," said organizer Vicki Clark. "There's a whole reptile crowd, and another crowd just for the ferrets. " One could say there was a bird crowd, a mouse crowd, and a pig crowd as well.
NEWS
December 2, 1996 | By Kristin Vaughan, INQUIRER CORRESPONDENT
It was National Geographic, Wild Kingdom, and the neighborhood pet store all in one. Hundreds of people, from collectors to the curious, turned out to gift-shop for a favorite animal, search for an exotic pet, or just stare during the Expo USA Exotic Pet Showcase at the Fort Washington Expo Center over the weekend. About 8,000 people visited the fourth annual showcase, said Judy Van Dunk, who helped organize it. They found llamas, emus, potbellied pigs, boa constrictors, iguanas and other rare lizards, and exotic birds to look at or buy. While some people fed the pygmy goats, miniature horses and skunks at petting zoos, others listened to educational seminars, watched raptor demonstrations, or posed with a large boa constrictor wrapped around their bodies.
NEWS
November 25, 2003 | By Kathleen Brady Shea INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
For exotic animal breeder Sandra Reynolds, an acquittal on alleged violations of the state Wildlife Code should have been grounds for celebration. But what's a party without the guests of honor - in this case a wallaby, some lemurs, a kinkajou, and various other wild creatures? Reynolds, who received 33 citations from the Game Commission on Oct. 20, was found not guilty last week of illegally selling and possessing exotic animals, but her animals remain in state custody. "It's not right," she said.
NEWS
January 16, 1995 | By Karen E. Quinones Miller, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
They seem so cute when they're young, so friendly, even cuddly. But what does one do when that bundle of fur grows to 150 pounds of cougar able to kill livestock and human beings? Or when that wriggling finger of a snake winds up a seven-foot boa constrictor ready to put the wrap on the kid next door? The answer, animal experts say, is that all too often exotic pets wind up as public problems. Such, apparently, is the case with the cougar that has been spotted running loose in eastern Delaware County and along the western edge of Philadelphia.
NEWS
August 15, 1993 | By Joyce Vottima Hellberg, INQUIRER CORRESPONDENT
Inside Leanne Donovan's office, Mork and Mindy, Peter Frampton and Jackson - not the gloved one - waited to be seen. Mork and Mindy began to move about restlessly, as Joanne Auty took copious notes. "What do they like to dine on?" Donovan asked. "Wingless fruit flies and crickets," Auty answered. Was this some new Orkan diet, or the inspiration for Peter Frampton's music? Not exactly. These stars have never actually performed on television or in concert - though they have a pretty good act changing colors.
NEWS
February 22, 1995 | By Calvin Trillin
The last few days, I've been considering issues arising from the ownership of exotic pets. Yes, I know that there are more important issues in the world. Contemplating those, I think, was what drove me to concern myself with the issues arising from the ownership of exotic pets. It all began when I read a newspaper article about ferret-lovers losing a case in federal district court. Judge Allen G. Schwartz upheld the constitutionality of New York City's rarely-enforced ban on ferrets, as well as the Health Department policy of destroying a ferret without a hearing if it bites someone.
NEWS
November 29, 1993 | By Suzanne Gordon, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Don't be surprised to see Porky on patrol. Julie Steigerwald, a Philadelphia police officer, is the owner of a pot- bellied pig, and believes the city's drug-enforcement officers would be smart to buy the swines for drug-sniffing. They're cheaper to keep and quicker to train than dogs, she said. "I'm going to try to introduce it," said Steigerwald, a K-9 officer who bought a training leash for her pig yesterday at the Exotic Pet Showcase at the Valley Forge Convention Center.
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ARTICLES BY DATE
NEWS
October 26, 2011 | By Jennifer O'Connor
Dozens of animals that were enjoying a taste of freedom for the first time in their lives were shot dead in central Ohio last week after their owner opened their cages and killed himself. Tigers, lions, bears, and primates - no doubt confused, frightened, and exhilarated - experienced only a brief whiff of autonomy before they were blown away by authorities bearing high-caliber weapons. What kind of body count will persuade lawmakers to finally outlaw exotic pets? Although what happened in Zanesville, Ohio, should be a wake-up call for legislators, it may not make much of a difference.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 25, 2011 | BY DANIELLE MIESS, miessd@phillynews.com 215-854-5444
ON WHAT should have been an ordinary Wednesday in Zanesville, Ohio, last week, school was canceled and residents were urged to stay in their homes. Fifty dangerous animals - lions, bears, wolves and cheetahs - had been set loose by private owner Terry Thompson before he committed suicide. Local law enforcement later killed most of the aggressive animals before they could harm members of the community. As rare and shocking as this story was, people who own exotic pets are not so unusual.
NEWS
October 23, 2011 | By Michael Rubinkam, Associated Press
Yadah used to be an adorable baby. Now he's a cranky five-year-old with a willful streak and a $250-per-month food bill, and Shannon Pandarvis is desperate to get rid of him. Pandarvis' brown capuchin monkey has become too expensive for the out-of-work utility worker and his wife, but the couple can't find a sanctuary to take him in. Days after dozens of lions, tigers, and bears were slain by police, after an Ohio man mired in debt freed them...
NEWS
October 16, 2011 | By Manuel Valdes, Associated Press
TOLUCA, Mexico - The three tiny squirrel monkeys led a life of luxury on a 16-acre ranch, surrounded by extravagant gardens and barns built for purebred horses. More than 200 animals, ranging from mules to peacocks and ostriches, lived on the ranch in central Mexico and hundreds more stayed on two related properties, many in opulent enclosures. Also kept on the grounds were less furry fare: AK-47 assault rifles, Berrettas, hundreds of other weapons, and cocaine. The ranch's owner was Jesus "The King" Zambada, a leader of the powerful Sinaloa drug cartel.
NEWS
August 21, 2005 | By Tom McGurk INQUIRER SUBURBAN STAFF
William Lombardi knows firsthand the benefits of an in-county animal control operation. When his German shepherd, Bandit, got lost almost 18 years ago, the dog was picked up by a private company that handled animal control. Bandit's journey took him to a shelter in Carney's Point, Salem County - almost 30 miles from his Clayton home. Lombardi, now director of operations for Gloucester County Animal Control and Animal Shelter, was able to track him down. But a friend who lost a dog around the same time wasn't as fortunate.
NEWS
April 2, 2004 | By Kathleen Brady Shea INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
A judge reluctantly reversed part of an earlier decision ordering the state to return the exotic animals it seized more than a year ago from a London Grove Township breeder. Yesterday, Chester County Court Senior Judge Lawrence E. Wood said he believed the state Game Commission had the authority to keep Sandra Reynolds' fennec foxes and servals. The state must return her kinkajous and lemurs, however. "I feel badly at having raised Ms. Reynolds' hopes of getting all her animals back in my first opinion, only to dash them here," Wood wrote.
NEWS
December 4, 2003 | By Kathleen Brady Shea INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
From ring-tailed lemurs in Madagascar to some humans, descriptions of wild behavior punctuated a hearing yesterday in Chester County Court. Senior Judge Lawrence E. Wood heard testimony from the Pennsylvania Game Commission and from Sandra Reynolds, a West Grove breeder, who petitioned the court for the return of 13 exotic animals seized by the state in March. After listening to arguments - including disputes over whether Reynolds' African servals and fennec foxes bear any resemblance to lions, tigers, or bears - Wood took the matter under advisement.
NEWS
November 25, 2003 | By Kathleen Brady Shea INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
For exotic animal breeder Sandra Reynolds, an acquittal on alleged violations of the state Wildlife Code should have been grounds for celebration. But what's a party without the guests of honor - in this case a wallaby, some lemurs, a kinkajou, and various other wild creatures? Reynolds, who received 33 citations from the Game Commission on Oct. 20, was found not guilty last week of illegally selling and possessing exotic animals, but her animals remain in state custody. "It's not right," she said.
NEWS
February 7, 1999 | By Joseph A. Gambardello, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Just off the beaten track, in the still-developing tracts of South Jersey and Pennsylvania you might find them - the animal keepers. Often their exotic menageries have been there for years, known only to locals and wildlife inspectors or those who might need a special animal for a store opening or a commercial shoot. But 11 days ago, when sharpshooters killed a 431-pound Bengal tiger that had been wandering around Jackson Township, N.J., one keeper found herself in the unwanted glare of official investigations and media attention.
NEWS
October 30, 1997 | By Mary Anne Janco, INQUIRER CORRESPONDENT
The week-old alpaca with its white, wooly coat nuzzled her mother, Satire, outside the old stone barn yesterday as llamas grazed peacefully nearby in the pasture, oblivious to a recent zoning board decision. The baby alpaca was born while township zoning board members were mulling an appeal filed by Robert and Phyllis Sauter, who had been cited for violating township zoning by keeping four llamas and two alpacas on their 2.9-acre property on Roscommon Road. This week, the board denied that appeal.
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