Born Free USA Says Wild Animal Incident Yesterday in Ohio Spotlights Tragedy and Danger of Keeping Wild Animals in Captivity

For Immediate Release

Born Free USA Says Wild Animal Incident Yesterday in Ohio Spotlights Tragedy and Danger of Keeping Wild Animals in Captivity

WASHINGTON - Born Free USA, a leader in animal welfare and wildlife conservation - - and a force in working to keep wildlife in the wild - - says the incident in Ohio yesterday is devastating for the animals and the public.  This morning police are still trying to chase down dozens of frightened and confused wild animals including bears, wolves and tigers, who have escaped from a “private preserve” in Zanesville, Ohio.

According to Will Travers, Born Free USA’s CEO who is in the U.S. this week from the U.K. on a speaking tour, said this morning, “Born Free fears for everyone’s safety in Ohio and wants this horrific situation to serve as a brutal reminder that wildlife belong in the wild and that no one should ever put the animals or the public at risk by trying to confine them in a zoo, circus, backyard, or home where serious injury or death, can occur at any time.  Laws have to be created and enforced to stop these potential situations at the source.  No one should be allowed ever to ‘own’ a wild animal. Period.”

Born Free USA, a leader in animal welfare and wildlife conservation, tracks such incidents through its online database designed as a resource for the media, lawmakers, activists and the public, to help shed light on the magnitude of the issue. 

The database lists more than 1,598 attacks and incidents reported that have occurred since 1990, searchable by state, species, and key word, and includes a map graphic marking each location -- a shocking visual to illustrate how geographically widespread the problem is.

Every year, captive exotic animals -- kept in zoos, circuses, or as private “pets” -- are involved in incidents that result in human injury or death.   Keeping any wild animal in captivity is inherently cruel, as it deprives them of the ability to freely engage in instinctual behaviors in their natural environment.

Born Free USA is a nationally recognized leader in animal welfare and wildlife conservation. Through litigation, legislation, and public education, Born Free USA leads vital campaigns against animals in entertainment, exotic “pets,” trapping and fur, and the destructive international wildlife trade.  Born Free USA brings to America the message of “compassionate conservation” -- the vision of the U.K.-based Born Free Foundation, established in 1984 by Bill Travers and Virginia McKenna, along with their son Will Travers, now CEO of both organizations. Born Free’s mission is to end suffering of wild animals in captivity, conserve threatened and endangered species, and encourage compassionate conservation globally.  More at: www.bornfreeusa.org; twitter http://twitter.com/bornfreeusa; Facebook http://www.facebook.com/BornFreeUSA.

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Born Free USA is a national animal advocacy nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization, contributions to which are tax-deductible. Our mission is to end the suffering of wild animals in captivity, rescue individual animals in need, protect wildlife — including highly endangered species — in their natural habitats, and encourage compassionate conservation globally.

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