Saturday, 16 November 2013

Primates are not Pets

You may think that the UK is a nation of animal lovers. Well with 6.6 million dogs & 7.7 million cats (1) you may be right, however the laws we have in this country simply do not match that saying. For instances did you know you can (and people do) LEGALLY keep the following primates as pets in the UK:

  • Marmosets
  • Lemurs
  • Squirrel Monkeys
  • Capuchins
  • Spider Monkeys
  • Macaque
  • Vervet Monkeys
  • Tamarins
  • And many more

You don't even need a license to have some of these species as pets & there is an estimated 5,000 primates kept as pets in the UK, although this number could even be as high as 20,000 as there is a high non compliance rate with the licenses (2).

You might think after reading this that owning a primate as a pet would be great as they are cute. You would be wrong. Primates are wild, intelligent animals that live in large social groups and apart from it being wrong to take them away from their family and home, they are also very dangerous. They develop sharp teeth and are immensely strong and will not think twice about biting you.

Unfortunately people do keep them as pets and no idea about their welfare, you just have to see the story about Joey (now living at Wild Futures Monkey Sanctuary) to understand how much pain they suffer; during their time as a pet and even after they are rescues as a result of the years of captivity.

Watch Joey's story narrated by Stephen Fry here - Joey's Story

Primates are not pets and we need to lay down the laws to protect them and educate people about animals not being there simply for our use. Animals live on this planet with us, were here before us and will be here after we are gone. We cannot live on this planet without animals and its about time we start showing them the respect they deserve.

What you can do:

  • Sign the petition to end the LEGAL primate pet trade for good - sign here
  • Adopt a monkey from Wild Futures and support a fabulous charity, can be done for individuals/couples/families - adoptamonkey or for schools and businesses please send an email to -
  • Volunteer at the monkey sanctuary and have a great experience while helping an amazing charity
  • Become a Wild Futures Ambassador and help raise awareness and money for primates worldwide
  • Support Wild Futures by signing up to their newsletter & follow them on Facebook & Twitter
  • Most importantly tell everyone you know about the fact Primates are not Pets!

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