The welfare and suitability of primates kept as pets

Soulsbury, Carl, Iossa, Graziella, Kennel, Sarah and Harris, Stephen (2009) The welfare and suitability of primates kept as pets. Journal of Applied Animal Welfare Science, 12 (1). pp. 1-20. ISSN 1088-8705

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Amid growing concern about keeping exotic species as companion animals, nonhuman primates have been highlighted as inappropriate for private ownership. However, there has been no comprehensive review of the suitability of primates
as pets, using a framework such as Schuppli and Fraser’s (2000). Schuppli and Fraser incorporate welfare of the individual, of others, and of the environment. This
article (a) examines the numbers, origins, ages, and ownership trends of primates kept as pets in the United Kingdom and (b) identifies a number of welfare, health,
and environmental concerns. Overall, strong evidence supports the argument that primates are not suitable pets; it is unlikely that the welfare of pet primates can
be adequately addressed in normal households. Finally, using unpublished data on complaints and inquiries received by the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, the study assesses the degree of public concern about the welfare of primates kept as pets in England and Wales. The article identifies a wide range of concerns about keeping pet primates and concludes that this practice
should end.

Keywords:primates, animal welfare, pets
Subjects:C Biological Sciences > C120 Behavioural Biology
Divisions:College of Science > School of Life Sciences
ID Code:7253
Deposited On:14 Jan 2013 17:29

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