You visit your friend’s place and meet her monkey. You go to your folks’ and their skunk stinks. Your neighbor protects his dog like his life depends on it, and someone you know from the mountains loves petting hedgehogs. Have you ever stopped in your steps and wondered if it was actually legal to keep these animals as pets? What we have here today will stun you and make you think twice about every pet you’ve met. There are some animals in the USA that are beloved pets, but are they even legal? Several states forbid several pets for several reasons, while states like Nevada, Wisconsin, Alabama, North Carolina, and South Carolina allow almost anything that creeps, crawls or slithers. So let’s sit down and talk about 7 common pets animals that are illegal to own in the USA.
Hedgehogs are adorable tiny, spiky balls of fun, but are prohibited from being kept as a pet in New York City, Arizona, California, Georgia, Hawaii, Maine, Pennsylvania, and Douglas County, Nebraska. This exotic animal is controversial among animal activists saying that they are not suitable for human companionship due to their nocturnal nature. Their quills can become sharp and painful to humans and other animals when they’re feeling threatened. Hedgehogs are still considered great pets in other parts of the country.
Ferrets are pretty ordinary, and some of the most common pets among animals that are illegal to own. This is because they can carry rabies and canine distemper virus they are not allowed to be kept as a pet in New York City, Washington DC, California, Hawaii, or Puerto Rico. They aren’t truly domesticated animals but are ultimately predators with sharp teeth and can revert back to the wild state if they escape. You need a respective permit to ride a ferret in Rhode Island or to breed a ferret in Illinois or Georgia. Ferrets were once banned in many other U.S. cities but the laws were repealed in the 1980s and 1990s when ferrets became popular pets.
You cannot keep these adorable possums as pets if you are living in Alaska, California, Hawaii, or New York City. California, which is a state with strict pet ownership, bans the animal completely, believing that they can cause a threat to the natural ecosystem. Sugar gliders, a cute, nocturnal relative of the flying squirrel, may be prohibited in these states as they make noise and require large, aviary-like space. States such as Pennsylvania and Massachusetts allow you to keep a sugar glider if you have a permit.
It is illegal to kill some of the bat species as they are federally protected animals. It is also illegal to capture wild bats for domestication as their life expectancy of up to 25 years can shrink to just one year or less if kept in captivity. You can transport a bat only if you are affiliated with a scientific organization, legitimate sanctuary, or registered educational establishment. You need a permit from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to transport bats within the U.S.
You would have never thought of having a skunk as a pet in your home, but there are many people in the US who love to pet one. You are least likely to be allowed to own a skunk even if you have its scent glands surgically removed. Skunks which are unpopular animals are still considered illegal in many states. There are 17 states that allow them as pets, but various cities and municipalities may have their own rules about their ownership. You have to check with the local government before deciding to have a skunk as a pet.
You’ve probably seen pigs at farms, pet stores and many houses, but New York City has put a ban on these cuties. This is to keep us safe, because pigs can be carriers of rabies when exposed to other rabid animals like dogs and bats – especially in the urban areas where the population of stray animals keeps growing. Being surprisingly smart, pigs also seem like they consider themselves our equals, and we don’t deny that. However, just like some of us are short tempered, pigs, especially wild ones, can be pretty aggressive towards humans and cause us unwarranted harm.
People love eating hamsters as they love eating antlers. Both are, unsurprisingly, illegal to keep in some states. You might be put behind bars if you pet these critters in Hawaii and California. This is because Chinese hamsters are prone to establishing destructive colonies that can eventually damage our crops, plants and other animals. Why, you may ask? The climate of these two states is similar to the climate these rodents come from,which means they’re going to breed, multiply and wreck havoc!
These were 7 common pet animals that are illegal to own in the USA. We bet some of the names came as a surprise. Which of these illegal pets are legal in your state, and which of them are banned? Tell us your answers in the comments below.
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