Originally Posted by Deb25
For me, the trouble is that the answers are bigger than the questions. Define 'responsible'. So regulations are set up. Then there are people who cry foul at the minimum standards. Why are my 4.9 acres not enough? Who's to say that this animal needs 5 acres? Now, who polices all of this? We can't even guarantee the safety of children, much less animals. Where are the authorities getting all of these inspectors to make sure all the regulations are being followed? And who foots the bill? And finally, like anyhting else, the law abiding will follow the rules, and those who don't will find a way to slip under the radar. I don't know if I support a ban, per se, but I really do not know how to guarantee a safe environment for animals that are not domesticated and aren't essentially meant to be kept in prvately-owned captivity.
Responsible = Meets/exceeds the established requirements for owning these animals.
TCS has rules, IMO has a minimum age requirement. How do we enforce that? Do we let people that have 99 posts, post in IMO...or do we let people who aren't old enough post in IMO? Not usually right?
Rules are rules. In Florida the inspectors who enforce permits are the Fish and Wildlife Officers. Inspecting wildlife owners is only part of their job, and they have a responsibility to inspect ANY place that has these animals. Busch Gardens for example is inspected by the same person who inspects most of the private owners in the Tampa area. These people have jobs that aren't solely focused on inspecting private owners, they are responsible for ensuring the safety and health of all wildlife captive OR wild in the state.
Also, the additional costs incurred for these inspections are offset by permitting fees. All permits are renewed annually, and depending on the use of the permit, the fee is different. The fee is less in Florida if you only intend to have the animal as a pet, and do not intend to exhibit the animal. However if you intend to exhibit the animal, then you are required to pay a higher fee. Also if it is found out that you are exhibiting an animal without the proper license you face fines and potentially revocation of yout license and the confiscation of your animal.
Furthermore, if you Exhibit you animals, you are also required by federal law to be USDA permitted. That means that not only do you have to meet state regulations, but you also have to meet federal standards. You now have two inspectors who inspect randomly throughout the year, and who require immaculate veterinary records, who monitor the diet you are feeding these animals, and who monitor your ability to care for these animals and their enclosures.
There is a procedure for seeking variances for the rules. Each case is unique, and most requests are denied. However if you can demonstrate a good reason for them varying the rules for your specific situation, then they will work with you.
Sadly though, as you said, Laws are only for those that are willing to follow them. You can make murder illegal all you want, and it will still happen. Drugs too. Etc. Bans only hurt those who would obey the law to begin with. Law abiding citizens, for all practical purposes, must be considered responsible.
One last thing...
Originally Posted by Deb25
for animals that are not domesticated and aren't essentially meant to be kept in prvately-owned captivity.
Is there any animal that you can think of that started as domesticated? Is any animal "essentially meant to be kept in privately-owned captivity"?