Last year, 82 reports were received, five years earlier that was 27. According to the director, influencers ensure that people buy a wild animal more often. “People copy the behavior of influencers, who showcase the exotic animals. But in the videos you only see the fun, endearing side of the animals. ” Wild cats, such as leopard cats and servals, are especially popular. Small claw otters, raccoons and sugar gliders also pass by.
According to Van Gennep, people do not take into account the dangerous side of the animals and the measures that are necessary to take good care of them. “You have to turn your house into some kind of fortress, otherwise they will escape. They also don’t get along well with other pets, and servals can attack cats or rabbits, for example. ” Then people are fed up and the animals are resold or end up in a shelter. According to Van Gennep, there is not always enough space for the animals there.
The so-called pet and hobby animal list, which the Ministry of Agriculture has been working on for years, could be a godsend. That list will include animals that may be kept as pets. Most European countries already have such a list. After the summer, the list must also be completed in the Netherlands.
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