Occasionally, we get curious about which animals people keep as pets at home besides your garden-variety, puppy, dog or kitty cat in NJ. So I started to think about which animals are actually illegal to own.
But while doing the research, I found out some surprising things about animals that are actually LEGAL to own in the State.
According to an article by Nicole Murray on 943thepoint.com, it’s actually LEGAL in NJ to own boa constrictors, pythons, hedgehogs, opossums, raccoons, red squirrels, sloths, skunks, ostriches, snapping, turtles, otters (yeah, I was surprised, too,) flying squirrels, tarantulas, and exotic goats.
Now, for the bad news.
It is illegal to own dangerous wild animals, such as lions, tigers, bears, and venomous snakes. But you probably figured that out.
Possessing a dangerous wild animal in New Jersey is a fourth-degree crime, which can result in up to 18 months in prison and a fine of up to $10,000.
In addition to the legal penalties, owning a dangerous wild animal can also pose a serious threat to public safety and animal welfare.
These animals require specialized care and training, and even with the best intentions, they can still be dangerous.
The article gives a partial list of some more of the animals that you should not be owning if you live in New Jersey, including something called a gila monster, which is a species of venomous lizard native to the southwestern United States, and with that name who would want to own it anyway?
Overall, it is important to remember that certain pets are illegal to own in New Jersey for a reason. These animals pose a serious threat to public safety and animal welfare, and no matter how sweet and cuddly and soft and adorable and furry you may think they are, it’s in everyone’s best interest to avoid owning them.
Opinions expressed in the post above are those of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Judi Franco only.
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