Primate Rescue Center

Primate Regulation Not Monkey Business for Missouri Senate

April Truitt March 09, 2011

A chimpanzee named Travis mauled a woman and left her face unrecognizable when he escaped his home in Stamford, Conn., and attacked Charla Nash, a close friend of his owner on Feb. 16, 2009. A year later, another chimpanzee, Sueko, also escaped from his home in Kansas City, and attacked a police car. Both Travis and Sueko came from Jefferson County, Mo.

The Senate Agriculture Committee debated a bill that would require owners to obtain permits for and neuter their primates incited passionate testimonies from several Missouri primate breeders.

Sen. Joseph Keaveny, D-St. Louis City, sponsored the bill after Eric Miller, veterinarian and senior vice president at the Saint Louis Zoo, requested these large and exotic animals be regulated.

"Missouri is one of the few states with no (statewide) regulation of large and exotic animals," Miller said. "It's a national standard Missouri is working on catching up to."


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