By Dr. Andrew Jones
This is an unbelievable story, with a horrible ending.
In Zanesville Ohio, Terry Thompson had a huge number of exotic animals, including 18 Bengal tigers, 8 lions, Grizzly bear, 6 Black bears, Leopards, Monkeys, Baboons, Wolves, 1 Baboon and 3 Cougars.
On October 19 he is found to have committed suicide, but he released all of the exotic animals to wander free in the community.
Sheriff deputies arrive to find the dead man, and wild animals on the loose in front of them.
County Sheriff Matt Lutz tells his deputies to start shooting. And soon there is a death toll of 49 of the animals. Some of the killed animals included the 18 Bengal tigers, 8 lions, 6 Black Bears.
After the shooting ended, only 1 monkey was still on the loose.
Some of my thoughts
How is it that this man was ever allowed to keep all of these rare exotic animals on his property?
Clearly Ohio has little to no regulation. The Humane Society of America reported that it ranks at the bottom of the U.S. states in having virtually no regulation of individuals keeping wild and exotic animals. Clearly there needs to be nationwide regulation, not just individual state regulation. This never should have been allowed to happen in the first place.
Most disturbing to me is that so little effort was put on trying to save any of these animals.
Did they really all need to be shot?
I don’t think so.
The zoo in Columbus, Ohio sent veterinarians with tranquillizer guns, but they weren’t given a chance to use them.
The deputies were a little too quick on the draw- of course only interested in protecting human life- and killed all the animals before there was ever a chance to use the tranquillizer guns.
Let’s just hope that authorities learn something from this- there should never be some mass killing of wild and exotic animals, be it in the United States, or any other part of the world.
Dr Andrew J
P.S. I appreciate your comments.
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