February 24, 2014
Tell Maryland Legislators that Run-Down Zoos are No Place for Wild Animals!
Roadside zoos are notorious for being inhumane,
unsafe, and poorly regulated. A recent
report by the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) proved that this
is certainly true in Maryland, so legislators have introduced a bill to address
these serious animal welfare and public safety concerns. We need you to speak
in support of S.B.
827/H.B. 1124 before their upcoming hearings!
HSUS’s report looked
at three of Maryland's roadside zoos—Catoctin Zoo, Plumpton Park Zoo, and
Tri-State Zoo—and uncovered deeply disturbing conditions. Despite having a USDA
license, these unaccredited facilities failed to provide basic care to many
animals; had infrastructure in disrepair; had filthy, foul-smelling, and
unsanitary conditions; and had inadequate staffing, among countless other
concerns. Investigators found tigers living in empty, deteriorating swimming
pools; primates living in crowded or isolated conditions without adequate
environmental enrichment; bears exhibiting neurotic behaviors; and dangerous, outdated
S.B. 827/H.B. 1124 would close a loophole in Maryland
law that currently allows many exotic pet owners and unqualified facilities to
continue to keep, breed, and acquire these species by obtaining a USDA license.
This bill would also prohibit public contact with specified exotic animals
under any circumstances. Please urge your state legislators to
make the compassionate decision and support this bill – for the sake of both
animals and people in Maryland!
For the animals,
P.S. You can help us monitor these inhumane roadside zoos. Just visit our Zoo Check page to learn what you can do to be the animals' eyes and ears.
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