A South Yorkshire MP is calling for more to be done to regulate the sale of exotic pets after a report highlighted the huge scale of unsuitable and potentially dangerous animals widely available to buy online.
The One Click Away report, compiled by the Blue Cross pet charity and the Born Free Foundation, discovered that from a sample of 1,796 online adverts, at least 53 different types of reptile, 37 types of exotic bird, 28 types of exotic mammal and seven types of amphibians were advertised for sale.
The report found few adverts offered advice on the animals’ history or how to care for them, potentially leaving new owners unaware of health or behaviour problems and sellers are not required to state whether an animal could be harmful.
Angela Smith, MP for Penistone and Stocksbridge, has now signed a pledge calling for the Government to ‘undertake a review of exotic pet breeding, trade and keeping’, ‘improve the enforcement of all relevant legislation concerning the sale of exotic pets’ and ‘review the Pet Animals Act 1951 to reflect the increasing sale of animals over the internet’. She said: “The welfare of thousands of exotic pets is at risk and we need to act.”