|wild animals are wild animals, cages raised by people or not. They are still wild, and will still do what instinct tells them to do
This is not true , when done properly AND RESPONSIBLY.
Now, I have to say yes, I feel terrible for this boy, but in no way shape or form should this incident be a reason to BAN exotic animal onwership...ever!!!! Who is at fault here?? There are a few people at fault. First, if I have the facts correct, the boy was not the son of the tiger owner. So, if this was the case, why did the PARENTS of this boy allow him to be there so close to these cats, unless they just didn't know. Second, I have not seen pictures of the owners facility, but had it been done right, this incident would NEVER have happened. Just the fact that the story says the tiger owner opened the door and the cats pushed there way through it tells me a lot. First off, if done correctly, the door should open only one way and that is open inward into the enclore, NEVER outward. That way, when entering the enclosure, if the cats would push on the door as it is being opened, the door would be pushed closed. The enclosure should have whats called a double door entry and should pass what we call, "the drop dead test". This double door entry system works as follows. You open the first door and close it behind you, then you open the second door that leads into the enclosure. Should the animal get past this door, it still can not escape, because it will be locked in the double door entry area. The drop dead test is as follows. You ask yourself this question. While entering my enclosure, if I should suddenly drop dead, can my cat escape? If you answer yes, then the entry system MUST be changed. I have a double door entry system for Nakoma on his enclosure. All enclosures MUST have a perimeter fence that is a minimum of 3 feet (4 feet preferred) away from the enclosure walls and completely surround the enclosure. This will prevent any unwanted contact with the animal from people who should not be there. I have a perimeter fence that is 4 feet from Nakoma's enclosure as well. Last, but in no way the least, you should have a "lock out or lock down" section for the larger cats. This lock out or lock down is an area of the enclosure the cat can be locked in, should you need to enter the enclosure or to make repairs to the doors. Had these steps been followed, this incident would never have happened. Don't make statements that these animals should not be owned by private individuals, because that is wrong. It is the irresponsible owners that make ALL exotic animal owners look bad. The RESPONSIBLE owners, like myself, should not be made to suffer due to an irresponsible person's mistakes. If this is true, then ALL animal owners should not be allowed to own their animals, because many domestic animals suffer in the hands of irresponsible owners and MANY people are injured by domestic animals, due to the irresponsible owner. There should NEVER be bans...never. But I do believe in resonable regulations. My wife and I recently attended an exotic feline husbandry course in April to continue our education on the care of our cats. We are certified, you needed to pass the test with a score of 80% and higher. I would like to have a cougar some day, but NOT until I am 100% sure I can care for such an animal, so that all the animal's needs are met and that the safety of the public is ensured. This is how exotic animal ownership is done responsibly