U.S. states that allow you to keep tigers, monkeys and bears as pets

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There are more pet tigers in the US than there are wild tigers left in the world. Yes, tigers aren’t meant to live as pets, and they’re not very good pets (being wild animals that can tear you apart), and the pet tiger trade doesn’t help maintain genetic diversity the way zoo-run programs do, but they’re still a huge part of keeping tigers from going extinct.

Citation please?

tigers, monkeys and bears


If having a pet monkey is legal in Wisconsin, why don’t any of my darn relatives have one in their homes? Jeez, I’d have one in every room!


I’m pretty sure I don’t want a pet that can turn doorknobs and operate a can-opener.

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I wouldn’t mind a monkey that could do all my internetting so I could spend more time watchin’ teevee.


There used to be a pet store down the street from me in Cincinnati Ohio that had skunks, hedgehogs, and a coatimundi. Not sure if any of those are still allowed in Ohio.

Monkees are the worse pets, they run all over your house, shit and piss at will, they pull your hair and assorted other nasty things. I nice dog or kitty, every thing else should be let wild.

in the U.S. it’s not a federal crime to own exotic animals

It’s slavery to presume to “own” any animals.

What about simple cohabitation? If there is a bear in the neighborhood who likes to eat at my place and hang out with me, at what point do I become legally responsible for it? Is it legally responsible for itself until that point?

Sorry, but of all the animals on Earth, humans seem the most clueless about ecology. No organisms ever have, or ever will, exclusively control the use of land.

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How? Are there a lot of individuals out there who own more than one tiger, or do they have mixer parties for tiger fanciers in the hopes of getting a litter? I guess they could always go with the artificial insemination route but that seems like a dangerous and awkward vocation to pursue outside of a controlled environment.

A: “I had to beat off a ferocious tiger today.”
B: “My word! How did you ever survive the attack?”
A: “I didn’t say it was an attack…”


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Oh probably about the point that it mauls someone because you have habituated it to people without training or restraining it. Don’t feed the bears.

It is truly unfortunate if a bear mauls humans. But, humans are vastly overpopulated compared to bears. Consider the tigers! A tiger killing 100 people doesn’t even put a dent in the human population figures, but the converse is not true.

Where is my ethical imperative for restraining a bear? What is the foundation of human exclusivity? Is human monoculture a sustainable concept in practice?

If your goal is to ensure the bear’s well-being then you DEFINITELY shouldn’t be habituating it to humans. Bears which have no fear of humans are much, much more likely to get shot.

Ever watch that documentary Grizzly Man about Timothy Treadwell? Now there was a guy who really loved being in the company of bears. And his friends all advised him that wasn’t a good idea, because eventually one would probably eat him. And he said he could think of no nobler end than to become a meal for a bear. And his friends said “you idiot, what do you think will happen to the bear after he eats you?”

Long story short: Treadwell pushes his luck one time too many, he and his companion get eaten by a bear. Humans find and shoot said bear.


No, my goal is to ensure the biosphere’s well-being by making humans get over the bogus notion that they somehow get to live in a human-only world. I think that it is the single most destructive problem facing humanity (and everybody else). Humans need to live in a robust and varied ecology to survive, just like any other complex organism. It doesn’t really matter if they imagine that this is somehow inconvenient.

You asked when you were legally responsible for the bear. Any resemblance between the law and ethics is purely coincidental. :slight_smile: That being said, there is an ethical imperative to not needlessly endanger the people around you. You may also fulfill that imperative by not habituating the bear to humans in the first place. Given your regard for wildlife, you may wish to consider whether you have an ethical imperative to not needlessly endanger the bear by encouraging it to come in to contact with humans, who are known to be efficient and remorseless killers of bears. Regardless of the merits of human monoculture, the history of human/bear interaction demonstrates that human/bear cohabitation is not sustainable; rather it is typically fatal to one or the other.

Sure, but I do not subscribe to the exceptionalism that human lives are somehow inexplicably more worthy than those of other people. So my imperative also includes not marginalizing non-human life. In fact, from an ecological diversity angle, I’d say it can be easily argued that the more endangered a population is, the greater their present value is. From this perspective, tigers, monkeys, and bears alike are more worthy of preservation than yet more overpopulated humans.

I believe in diversity, but not “wildlife”. Because the concept of wildlife represents that false separation between human society and the rest of life. Humans are merely a subset of it, along with everybody else.

Is it truly regardless, if a human monoculture is ecologically suicidal?

That’s life! And time has demonstrated that it is perfectly sustainable.

Only if “all the bears end up dead” is your definition of sustainable. That is where most of the world’s bears went.

Making this out to be about bears specifically is missing the point. Bears have little trouble living in an environment with other organisms. The maladaptive strategy is almost exclusively human, and can be traced to their policies of literally not recognizing any other species right to exist. Nobody else does this! It is not “overhunting”. Humans need to get over the idea of living separately from other organisms, or they will not survive.