The odds of death or serious injury by exotic pet are so minuscule, though this certainly is not how it is portrayed by the media and assuredly not Animal Planet's Fatal Attraction. These are single, isolated incidents.
Why does the media including Animal Planet blow these rare events out of proportion? To attempt to add some credibility to their personal agenda and their personal agenda is downright scary folks.
Fatal Attraction is another obvious political attempt to control people and animals. Partners*** Animal Planet and the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) by my perspective, these two partners seemingly have the same agenda as the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA).
HSUS is an animal rights group (completely end the use and ownership of animals) not an animal welfare organization (work for the humane treatment of animals). They are bloated lobbying machines to take away our pets; in addition, out to put ranchers and farmers out of business. Maybe you will take heed when cattle pastures, dairy farms, sheep ranchers replace their animals with carrots and peaches. "Nearly 1 million Americans donate money to HSUS every year. And most are completely unaware that they're bankrolling PETA-style propaganda, far-reaching anti-meat campaigns, a huge staff of lawyers and bloated pension plans for HSUS executives," from michiganfarmbureau.com a publication of the Michigan Farm Bureau.
The animal rights groups are targeting any form of animal husbandry don't be fooled this includes dogs and cats. Exotic pet owners are fewer in numbers and much easier targets.
The supposed reptile attack by monitor lizards, of Ronald Huff from Newark, Delaware, age 42 at the time of death (2002), is doubtful. The death by lizard theory is unlikely because there were no reports of human fatalities caused by non domestic animals in Delaware in-between the years 1999-2004 (CDC records). The reptiles were feeding on a body of an already dead person, as with any carnivorous/omnivorous animal, including squirrels, they will feed on dead carcasses.
Alexandria Hall from North College Hill Ohio, age 44 at the time of death, died in 2004 of an urutu viper - urutu pit viper bite. She was given the wrong antivenom.
I saw no creditable testimonies in Animal Plant's broadcast. No family members were willing, not asked, or flat-out refused to be interviewed. I hardly call a disgruntled ex-husband a creditable source.
Josephine Martell, program director, the so called exotic expert has no right to diagnose people as having mental problems; Martell has no medical license. Personally, if I was a family member of one of these two victims I would consider action against Animal Planet. Martell is paid by both IFAW (International Fund for Animal Welfare,) and Captive Wildlife Coalition. Martell is nothing more than an Animal Rights Activist, and has no credentials or licenses to practice medicine.
Do these animal rights groups have something other than animal rights on their powerful little minds? You better believe it...the almighty dollar.
All of us have to file taxes each year and the HSUS does too. In 2008 $4.7 million was granted, half of which went to political lobbying. They filed four pages specifying lobbying activities at the federal and state levels. Only $450,000 went to hands-on animal care facilities', one half of one percent of its yearly budget of 90 million. This year their budget is closing in at approaching $100 million. The fact is the HSUS does not own one single animal shelter in the United States. Just because local shelters have humane society in their title, they are not affiliated with the HSUS in anyway.
Recently, Center for Consumer Freedom (CCF) announced the launch of a watchdog group to oversee the activities of the HSUS – the organization HumaneWatch.org. Independent watchdogs become necessary when an organization becomes unaccountable, overfunded with funding obviously not going toward the purpose of the original intent. "HSUS now has an annual budget around the size of an NFL payroll. It has become too big and too unaccountable. Someone has to pay closer attention," according to HumaneWatch.org's website.
Reptile breeders have made remarkable achievements, especially in the last decade in captive-bred reptiles; producing healthier and hardier animals. They have been able to induce reproduction in captivity. There are hundreds of thousands of reptiles (captive-bred) and reptile owners (responsible) if not millions worldwide.
At one time the HSUS seemed to be an organization we could believe in. This persona unfortunately still exists in people's minds but not in reality. It is now nothing more than a well-funded bureaucratic organization. They make you believe that these funds go to your local humane societies, which is not true.
They are after your sympathy with these rare incidences displayed in TV shows, your sympathy in their TV ads so they can add to their already bloated budgets.
The point being, this show was aired to influence politics. Animal Planet did nothing to bring awareness to animal welfare or responsible animal care.
It will be interesting to watch their propaganda on the next episode about big cats. I may have a comment or two.
*Statistics from Rexano.org
** Statistics from Rexano.org
Forbidden Creatures: Inside the World of Animal Smuggling and Exotic Pets> (Hardcover). This book expected out in April and from my standpoint looks hot. It can be pre-ordered now; I know it will be on my bookshelf.
Forbidden Creatures: Inside the World of Animal Smuggling and Exotic Pets
Ferrets: A Complete Guide available in paperback, PDF, and Kindle. By Diana Geiger (me:) Five star reviews! Now available at Barnes and Noble.
Ferrets: A Complete Guide - Paperback
Ferrets: A Complete Guide - Kindle
PDF Version Ferrets: A Complete Guide (Access to free PDF Reader)
Ferrets: A Complete Guide
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