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June 11, 2008

Wild animals don't make good pets

Development is encroaching more and more into areas that used to be solely animals' habitats, so it is likely that we will encounter more wild animals crossing "our" property, tempting us to intercede in the animals' natural life cycles. The best advice is to refrain from the urge to adopt or make contact with these animals.

Citizens need to be aware of the risks from caring for a wild animal whether carried home out of concern for the animal, a desire to have an unusual pet or for other reasons.

Some of the risks include:

Some myths about wildlife adoptions:

Wildlife experts and veterinarians agree that wildlife do not make good pets. These animals can be dangerous and will be unhappy in captivity, even under the best of circumstances. Young animals often change from sweet and cuddly to very aggressive - even if they are not diseased. People who find they can no longer care for their exotic "pets" encounter great difficulty in placing even healthy animals in a new home.

DNR protects and manages South Carolina's natural resources by making wise and balanced decisions for the benefit of the state's natural resources and its people.

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