The Oddities in the News Page

On this month's Oddities in the News Page:

Why keeping wild animals as pets is a bad idea


Flinstone House
Fluffy the Cat
Artificial Intelligence Newscaster
Harvard University UFO
Loch Ness

Pet raccoon euthanized after attacking 6-year-old Michigan girl, report says

Owner: "I will cough up a loogie and he will eat it from my mouth. I'm his mother."

Clinton Township man's pet raccoon escapes, bites 6-year-old.



May 10, 2019, Michigan -- Joel Bandrow, the owner of the raccoon named Bandit, is their neighbor, and says the pet wasn’t aggressive.

"I love my raccoon and I don't want nothing to happen to it," Joel Bandrow said. "Bandit sleeps with the grandbabies when they come over. He's a pet. I will cough up a loogie and he will eat it from my mouth. I'm his mother."

The father of the girl who was attacked didn’t care, however.

"Do I want a little raccoon to die? No I don't. But this thing looks sick," McClusky said. "My kid's life is more important than some wild animal. I'm sorry. It is."

Now the child is being watched for rabies and Bandrow's pet raccoon has been euthanized after the animal escaped and attacked a 6-year-old girl in Clinton Township.

Patrick McClusky is understandably angry after his 6-year-old daughter was attacked in her backyard Wednesday afternoon. He said he was forced to capture a raccoon after it attacked his little girl and his 8-year-old son.

"I seen it was acting funny running in circles and falling down, dripping from his nose," Patrick said. "These people come over screaming it's their pet. They slide the door open, my daughter's screaming and crying - her leg's bleeding. The raccoon is on the steps, trying to chase them into the house. It ripped my sons pants."

Patrick caught Bandit and animal control officers then took him into custody. 

Animal control officers said that they must take the matter seriously and euthanize Bandit. The animal's brain will be sent to Lansing to be tested for rabies.

See more HERE



In 2009, Sandra Herold called her friend Charla Nash for help getting Herold's 200-pound pet chimpanzee, Travis, back into his cage.

But Travis turned on Nash, brutally attacking her by mauling her face and hands. Connecticut officials declined to prosecute Herold, although when Herold died of a rupture aortic aneurysm in 2010, Nash's family still had a $50 million civil suit in the works.

Nash later became the first patient to ever receive a double hand and face transplant.


Naming a bear "Teddy" doesn't mean you've done away with its animal instincts -- which the Walz family of Allentown, Pennsylvania, tragically found out when the 350-pound black bear they'd raised since it was a cub attacked and killed 37-year-old Kelly Ann Walz as she was cleaning its cage.

Though cages for wild animals often have a section that contains the animal while the other side is cleaned, Walz entered the cage with the bear loose. According to USA Today and the Pennsylvania Game Commission, "Her children and the neighbor's children saw the attack and summoned help, and the neighbor shot and killed the bear while it was atop Walz."


Jaren Hare and her boyfriend, Charles Darnell, were sentenced to 12 years in prison after the pet python they kept strangled Hare's two-year-old daughter, Shaianna in July 2009.

The couple told police that the reptile, which they kept inside a laundry bag in a tank pinned closed by a quilt, had escaped 10 times before they found it in the crib with Shaianna, "wrapped around her head and body."


The animal control department of Odessa, Texas, had already cited Amber Michelle Couch for not keeping her 150-pound mountain lion current on his vaccines and pointed out that the cage the lion lived in was too small -- and the gaps in between the bars too wide -- to be safe.

But in October 2011, Couch's nephew got too close to the cage and the lion -- which was later killed -- lacerated and punctured the child's face, according to the Odessa American Online.


When you think of exotic animals, deer aren't always the first four-legged creatures that come to mind -- but they're still wild animals that aren't built for living in captivity.

In 2010, Waskom, Texas resident Gerald Rushton, who was keeping a 550-pound deer as a pet, was killed when the animal kicked him while he was trying to move it.

See more HERE

Why keeping wild animals as pets is a bad idea


Wildlife Rescue & Rehabilitation says:

WRR strongly opposes keeping wild animals as pets. This principle applies to both native and nonnative species, whether caught in the wild or bred in captivity. People who obtain these animals are unable to provide the care they require and, in any event, the animals suffer from living in unnatural conditions.

The specifics from WWR:

Keeping Wild Animals as Pets Is Difficult or Impossible

Despite what animal breeders and dealers may say, appropriate care for wild animals requires considerable expertise, specialized facilities, and lifelong dedication to the animals. Their nutritional and social needs are demanding to meet and, in many cases, are unknown. They often grow to be larger, stronger, and more dangerous than owners expect or can manage. Small cats such as ocelots and bobcats can be dangerous to children. Wild animals also pose a danger to human health and safety through disease and parasites. There is no wild animal who wants to be kept as a captive by humans; being in captivity does not take away the wild genetic history of any wild animal.

Baby Animals Grow Up

Baby animals can be irresistibly adorable — until the cuddly baby becomes bigger and stronger than the purchaser ever imagined. The wild behavior of the adult animal replaces the dependent behavior of the juvenile, resulting in biting, scratching, or displaying destructive behaviors without provocation or warning. Such animals typically become too difficult to manage and are confined to small cages, passed from person to person, or disposed of in other ways. There are not enough reputable sanctuaries or other facilities to properly care for unwanted wild animals. They can end up back in the wild animal pet trade or be released into the wild where, if they survive, they can disrupt the local ecosystem.

The Keeping of Wild Animals Can Spread Disease

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) discourages direct contact with wild animals for a simple reason: They can carry diseases that are dangerous to people, such as rabies, herpes B virus, and Salmonella. The herpes B virus commonly found among macaque monkeys can be fatal to humans. Thousands of people get Salmonella infections each year from contact with reptiles or amphibians, causing the CDC to recommend that these animals be kept out of homes with children under five. An outbreak of monkeypox several years ago was set in motion when small mammals carrying the disease were imported for the pet trade and infected native prairie dogs, which were also sold as “pets”.

Domestication Takes Thousands of Years

Wild animals are not domesticated simply by being captive born or hand-raised. It’s a different story with dogs and cats, who have been domesticated by selective breeding for desired traits over thousands of years. These special animal companions depend on humans for food, shelter, veterinary care, and affection. Wild animals, by nature, are self-sufficient and fare best without our interference. The instinctive behavior of these animals makes them unsuitable as pets.

Capturing Wild Animals Threatens Their Survival

When wild-caught animals are kept as “pets,” their suffering may begin with capture — every year many, many birds and reptiles suffer and die on the journey to the pet store. Even after purchase, their lives are likely to be filled with misery. If they survive, they may languish in a cramped backyard cage or circle endlessly in a cat carrier or aquarium. More commonly, they become sick or die because their owners are unable to care for them properly. The global wild animal “pet” trade continues to threaten the existence of some species in their native habitats.

Having any animal as a pet means being responsible for providing appropriate and humane care. Where wild animals are concerned, meeting this responsibility is usually impossible. People, animals, and the environment suffer the consequences.

See more HERE