Born Free USA united with Animal Protection Institute

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April 1, 2014

New Law Will Protect Animal Welfare and Public Safety


Dear Friend,

In December of 2013, I spoke with Senator Bob Beach’s office in West Virginia and he asked whether he should reintroduce his Dangerous Wild Animals Act. I encouraged him to do so, and the bill arrived in the legislature in January, followed shortly by its companion in the House (sponsored by Del. Randy Swartzmiller). Just two months later, last Tuesday, Governor Earl Tomblin signed the Dangerous Wild Animals Act (H.B. 4393) into law, ending West Virginia’s status as one of only six states with no restrictions on exotic pets.

This law prohibits acquiring new “wild and exotic animals” as pets. It also addresses the problem of “roadside zoos” by requiring exhibitors with exotic animals to be accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA).

This victory couldn’t have happened without your support and advocacy. Each one of you who made a phone call to the governor’s office, emailed your legislator, or spent time educating others about the plight of privately owned exotic animals owns this success.

For the animals,


P.S. If you’re interested in the issue of exotic animals as pets, check out this month’s National Geographic feature, which quotes our CEO Adam Roberts and relies on Born Free USA’s wealth of information on the subject.

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