Banning pet primates in the UK
7 March, 2012 § 1 Comment
A new bill has been presented to the House of Commons hoping to prohibit the keeping of primates as pets in the UK. Please write to your MP to request their support. I have included the text I used, please feel free to edit it as you see fit. Wild Futures are promoting this so maybe contact them to tell them you have written.
There are approximately 5,000 privately kept primates in England , Scotland and Wales today. Due to shortcomings in
existing legislation, the authorities are unaware of the locations of or conditions in which the majority of these primates are kept.
· There is mounting evidence that the Code of Practice for the Welfare of Privately Kept Non-Human Primates
has failed to protect many privately kept primates since its introduction in 2010.
· The Animal Welfare Act 2006 cannot be enforced unless the authorities know where and how privately kept primates are being kept. Furthermore, genuine specialist
knowledge is required in order to ensure that primates’ needs are being met. Non-specialist veterinarians have repeatedly given poor advice concerning pet primates, resulting in lasting damage to many privately kept individuals.
· Without assessment by genuine specialists, pet primates can and regularly do fall through the cracks. In these times of financial austerity, it would be surprising to see enforcing authorities move toward employing primate specialists in order to ensure that the needs of pet
primates are being met!
· Seventy-nine percent of the British public does not believe that monkeys should be kept as pets, and the government has as much as admitted that they are unsuitable to be kept by anyone but “specialist keepers”
· The simplest and most economical solution to these problems is to introduce a total ban on the keeping of primates as pets. In January 2012 Member of Parliament for South East Cornwall Sheryll Murray presented the Keeping of Primates as Pets (Prohibition) Bill 2010-12 to the House of Commons. This Bill is due a second hearing soon. I would like to ask you as my representative to support this Bill as the only fair, economical and realistic solution to pet primate ownership and its devastating effects on individuals and in some cases wild populations.
· All MPs are welcome and encouraged to visit the Wild Futures’ Monkey Sanctuary, meet the monkeys we have rescued from the UK pet trade and learn about their stories. All they have to do is contact campaigns to arrange a visit!