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Bad Pets

Posted: Wed Nov 19, 2008 5:52 pm
by Matt Z
I stopped at a pet store on Monday to pick up crickets for my wifes leopard geckos (they eat crickets). While I was there, I saw a deathstalker scorpion for sale. As it's name implies the deathstalker is one of the most venemous of all scorpions, and potentially deadly. The same store also had a juvenile gaboon viper, although this may have been a store pet.

Some of the other animals I've seen for sale over the years include baby alligators and caimans, a full-grown capuchin monkey, reticulated pythons, a green anaconda, and two gila monsters.

Posted: Wed Nov 19, 2008 6:16 pm
by Matt Z
In many places it's perfectly legal for regular people to own crocodilians, highly-venemous reptiles, bears, big cats, etc.

Posted: Wed Nov 19, 2008 6:21 pm
by Matt Z
Meanwhile, some communities have gone to the opposite extreme banning ALL "exotic" pets, even hampsters and parakeets.

Posted: Wed Nov 19, 2008 11:45 pm
by TheHeb
In some places they ban specific dog breeds too. In Quebec(?) I think, they've banned Pit Bulls. I have heard that they are dangerous because they're so strong and so game (and allegedly aggressive). My brother has got a half shepherd/half Pit though and it is the dopiest animal alive.

A lot of the violence probably has to do with poor ownership (macho guys wanting a Pit because they're 'tough,' dogfighting etc.) but that's just my conjecture.

Posted: Thu Nov 20, 2008 2:10 am
by Ironman
The main problem is some people don't know how to properly care for these animals. Gila monsters are actually pretty tame. They just lay on the back of your couch most of the time. Pythons could crush you to death IF you let them wrap around you. But then again your car could kill you if you release the brake, put it in neutral and stick your head under the tire. The nice thing about a python is, if you leave one sitting out in your living room, there is no way in hell anyone will try to break into your house. Nothing scares the crap out of people like a 25' snake that's as thick as phone pole.

Some of those animals are pretty dangerous though. Venomous animals, big cats, bears and that sort of thing can't be stopped. You have to keep them caged and care for them without making contact. Even professionals have accidents. Animals can be unpredictable. Some animals have to be tranked before you can even touch them.

But even easy pets like dogs and cats can be problems because some people just can't properly care for them.

Posted: Thu Nov 20, 2008 7:21 am
by hoosegow

You have the problem of both spiders and monkeys. The worst of both worlds if you will.

Posted: Thu Nov 20, 2008 8:05 am
by Jaccard
Im not sure about Quebec but they have certainly just banned pit bulls in Ontario where I live after a string of recent attacks.

Im not sure how this will be policed since I assume the province will let owners grandfather in their dogs. A mass extermination seems grisly

Posted: Thu Nov 20, 2008 10:08 am
by stuward
The problem with pit bulls and similar dogs is not with the breeds themselves but as Heb said, with the owners. Agressive people tend to be attracted to agressive breeds. Then they conciously, or subconciously train them to be more agressive. This is when these breeds become dangerous.

Posted: Thu Nov 20, 2008 3:34 pm
by hoosegow
From what I understand, pit bull actually rate very low on the agressive scale. The biggest problem is that when they do attack, the damage is severe. A lab will nip and let go. A pit bull will bite and hold on.

Posted: Thu Nov 20, 2008 5:22 pm
by Matt Z
Pit Bulls have a very bad reputation and that tends to attract a lot of bad people to the breed. Realistically, they're no more dangerous than any other large, powerful breed (although most pitbulls are only medium-sized).

Posted: Thu Nov 20, 2008 5:29 pm
by Matt Z
"Gila monsters are actually pretty tame. They just lay on the back of your couch most of the time." - Ironman

Gila monsters are relatively slugging, slow moving creatures, and generally not very aggressive, BUT they're still highly venemous and capable of delivering a deadly bite. Are you sure you're not confusing them with some other lizard?

Posted: Thu Nov 20, 2008 5:46 pm
by Matt Z
"Pythons could crush you to death IF you let them wrap around you. But then again your car could kill you if you release the brake, put it in neutral and stick your head under the tire." - Ironman

I think you're underestimating just how fast and dangerous large pythons can be. Burmese pythons for example have been known to kill and eat full-grown leopards.

Likewise, zoo keepers generally work in teams of two or more whenever they feed and care for the largest pythons and boas. Then, if the snake strikes and begins to coil around one keeper, the other(s) can step in and uncoil it starting at the tail.

Posted: Thu Nov 20, 2008 5:52 pm
by Matt Z
Of course, most of the many python and boa species are relatively small. Ball Pythons for example rarely exceed four or five feet. In fact, only a handfull of species grow large enough to be really dangerous. These include the reticulated python, green anaconda, Indian/Burmese python, and the African rock python.

Posted: Tue Nov 25, 2008 12:21 pm
by KPj
A guy that stays around the corner from me has a real psycho of a dog. It's some kind of terrier, i'm not exactly sure. Anyway, he got it from his daughter, she and her b/f lived together. He's a real nutcase, and so is his whole family. They actually raised the dog to attack other dogs, i'm not sure how, but it certainly worked. Anyway. the guy ended up in jail, so the daughter moved back home (around corner from me) and she brought the dog.

To give an example, I was walking my dog (since died), a cocker spaniel, to the shop. It was sitting in a car, the driver window was open, the dog was in the back. It spotted my dog and in a flash, lept out the driver window, and literally landed on my dog, and they started fighting. The thing was nuts, i got caught by it as I pulled them apart, because the only way I could do it was grab both of their mouths, pull them apart, then pick up the psycho an put him back in the car. Other wise, they just got caught biting each other. My dog wouldn't/didn't harm anyone or anything, but obviously did when it had to.

It's a reflection of the kind nature of the guy that stays round the corner. The daughter couldn't be bothered with the dog, but he took it on, even though he wasn't a 'dog person' and even though the dog was completely nuts. It was strangely fine with humans though, but went mental with other dogs.

The guys back garden is fenced, so the dog couldn't get out when it was there. Once, another dog walked past, and it darted IN TO the fence, then, whilst going nuts, tried to force (not dig: FORCE) it's way under the fence. It got stuck, it broke 2 ribs, but still tried to get under the fence, still going nuts. The owner had to drag it out from under the fence. I'm pretty sure it also broke a leg, either that or hurt it badly. Afterwards, after it had got all patched up by the vet, the thing could barely move, it hurt itself so badly, just trying to get to another dog.

That was about one year ago. The dog now INTERACTS with my g/f's dog. It walks with it, they seem like friends. It's calmed down a lot. A little love, respect and stability goes a long way. I doubt it will ever be completely sane, but it's came a long way. The owner could of got that dog put to sleep at anytime, but persevered, and it's pretty much a good pet now...


Posted: Tue Nov 25, 2008 12:31 pm
by KPj
Oh, also, there's a pit bull round the corner from me too. They're only small/medium sized dogs, but dam scary looking, and strong as hell. A young girl, about 10-ish often takes it for a walk, and it just pulls her around as if it doesn't realise it's doing it. Quite funny. I often passed it with my dog and it just seemed very pleasant, and peacefull. But they look so mean, and you know what they're capable of. You just can't get that thought out the back of your mind. Similarly, the owner actually looks scarier than the dog, but he's a nice guy. You know how someone somewhere once said that owners sort of look or act like there pets, or something? Well, The Pit bull and the owner actually look quite similar, now that I think about it.

I've always liked Staffordshite Terriers. Again, small/medium sized dogs. They're very strong, and muscley looking. They sit very proud with big shoulders and chest. Although, I've yet to come across any breed of dog with the personality of a spaniel, but I could be slightly biased... My g/fs Basset Hound comes close, though, a large dog on small dogs legs. Quite bizarre. But great.