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Python kills children in New Brunswick

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Responsible ownership is the same logic you hear from gun owners.

I should own a gun that was designed specifically to efficiently kill humans, in a military setting, because I'm "responsible".

I should be able to own an animal that has moved to the top of the food chain by being able to efficiently kill other animals because I'm "responsible".

Edited by Boges

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http://www.thestar.com/news/canada/2013/08/06/campbellton_nb_snake_tragedy_raises_exotic_pet_concern.html

Update, the snake was being held in the apartment, not the store.

Also owning these breed is illegal in the maritimes.

The Flipping thing was over 4 meters long and weighed over 100 lbs!!!! There is no good reason to own such an animal.

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Guest American Woman

Would the town's bylaws make owning the snake legal? http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/the_americas/2-young-boys-killed-by-python-that-escaped-from-pet-store-in-canada/2013/08/06/a4744488-fe55-11e2-8294-0ee5075b840d_story.html

The town’s deputy mayor, Ian Comeau, said the Reptile Ocean shop was licensed to operate and “everything was according to our bylaws, to the provincial guidelines.” He said he saw alligators, crocodiles and snakes when he toured the shop with the fire department about two years ago.

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I just heard on the radio that a permit was not given for owning a 100 lbs snake. It's only legal to have this breed of python in a zoo.

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Guest American Woman

I just heard on the radio that a permit was not given for owning a 100 lbs snake. It's only legal to have this breed of python in a zoo.

As far as I've read, there haven't been any charges or an arrest made yet. I wonder why, if it was illegal for him to have the snake?

Edited by American Woman

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As far as I've read, there haven't been any charges or an arrest made yet. I wonder why, if it was illegal for him to have the snake?

I doubt owning an illegal animal is a criminal offense on it's own. Now if that animal kills someone you could see negligent homicide charges.

We need to find out how these boys died. A snake killing and not eating it's prey is odd. The police said it fell from the ceiling, did that only kill them? Or is this murder and was the snake framed? An autopsy will provide some clarity.

Edited by Boges

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Guest American Woman

I doubt owning an illegal animal is a criminal offense on it's own. Now if that animal kills someone you could see negligent homicide charges.

It would be an offense of some sort, though, wouldn't it? Charges are made for misdemeanors too.

We need to find out how these boys died. A snake killing and not eating it's prey is odd. The police said it fell from the ceiling, did that only kill them? Or is this murder and was the snake framed? An autopsy will provide some clarity.

Some experts say it's not that odd; that the snake, falling from the ceiling, would cling to whatever it fell on - wrap itself around whatever it fell on for security purposes. Other experts say it's not unusual for a python to kill 'prey' for food and save it for later.

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The practice of owning exotic predators in places other than zoos should be effectively banned IMHO.

My neighbor has an animal that has 98% of the chromosomes of a wolf. It's a (presumably vicious) black lab.

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Here's my questions, how the snake get the top off its cage? Has it gotten out before? How did it get the grate cover get off the duct? Why would the snake travel up rather down towards the furnace??

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My neighbor has an animal that has 98% of the chromosomes of a wolf. It's a (presumably vicious) black lab.

Dogs are domesticated. They have generations of human companionship bred into them.

That being said, there are breeds that shouldn't be allowed as family pets.

Chimps are genetically similar to humans, doesn't mean we should be able to keep them as children.

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Guest Derek L

Sounds like the place was actually a zoo:

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/new-brunswick/story/2013/08/06/nb-snake-boys-campbellton-mayor.html

"During school time a lot of kids would go there with their teachers and visit all of the reptiles he had. Apparently he sold some smaller reptiles and food for the reptiles, so it was allowed. Knowing what we know today, I don’t know if we would have allowed it, but you know it’s always things like that that happen and then you know you question yourself," he said.

And

The building's primary use is listed as institutional. It is registered as a reptile zoo charging admission for educational purposes.

Minutes from the Restigouche Planning District Commission’s Feb. 21, 1996, meeting describe the approval of Jean-Claude Savoie’s request to alter the use of his property to "institutional."

The minutes also describe Savoie’s business plan.

Mr. Savoie has a collection of reptiles which he would like to display for educational purposes," the minutes state. "He will charge admission and in return, educate people about the species which he has on display.”

And more importantly:

“It should be noted that Mr. Savoie has had an inspection done on the premises by the Provincial Fish and Wildlife Agency and has received a most favorable evaluation and will provide a copy of the issued operating permit as soon as he receives it,” the minutes continue.

So the local schools, town and the Province knew about the reptile zoo.......tragic accident, but does not deem unfounded, knee-jerk reactions, anymore then when the odd cougar or bear kill or injure a person.....

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I heard a couple of things about this incident on the radio on my way home:

  1. This type of snake is known for being quite aggressive, as constricting snakes go.
  2. Although keeping this type of snake is not allowed under current NB laws, this particular snake was "grandfathered" (presumably he had it when the law was instituted)
  3. The two boys had spent the day at the farm interacting with farm animals. It was suggested that this caused the boys to smell like food to the snake.

To me it seems risky to have an apartment upstairs from where dangerous reptiles are kept but you have to admit this is a bit of a freak incident.

Very sad, though. I can't imagine what the parents must be going through.

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Guest Derek L

The two boys had spent the day at the farm interacting with farm animals. It was suggested that this caused the boys to smell like food to the snake.

I just heard that on the National........that seems like a reasonable cause, and perhaps why the snake didn't eat one or both of the children....

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I heard a couple of things about this incident on the radio on my way home:

  • This type of snake is known for being quite aggressive, as constricting snakes go.
  • Although keeping this type of snake is not allowed under current NB laws, this particular snake was "grandfathered" (presumably he had it when the law was instituted)
  • The two boys had spent the day at the farm interacting with farm animals. It was suggested that this caused the boys to smell like food to the snake.
To me it seems risky to have an apartment upstairs from where dangerous reptiles are kept
I agree, and I'm sure that bylaw amendment will occur, but nonetheless ...

but you have to admit this is a bit of a freak incident.

Very sad, though. I can't imagine what the parents must be going through.

Tragic accident.

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When a Lab or a Poodle bite you, you may need stitches, when a Pit Bull bites you, you may need a new arm or you're loved ones will be planning a funeral.

Totally agree about pit bulls, it's such a simple concept I can't believe we actually need a debate over it.

I throw huge raised trucks in the same category. During head on collisions they end up running over the other vehicle killing the passengers and there really is no need to be that high.

Insecure people endangering others just feel tough.

Edited by BC_chick

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Dogs are domesticated. They have generations of human companionship bred into them.

That being said, there are breeds that shouldn't be allowed as family pets.

Such as labs, goldens and newfoundlands? All of those breeds are impossibly dangerous.

Chimps are genetically similar to humans, doesn't mean we should be able to keep them as children.

Such as this situation (link).

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Such as labs, goldens and newfoundlands? All of those breeds are impossibly dangerous. Such as this situation.

They're large dogs that should go to a capable "dog person" but I wouldn't classify a lab in the same category as Rottys, Dobermans and the famous Pit Bull.

Labs are the number one breed in America so if they were that dangerous, I'd imagine you'd see a decline in their numbers. Then again another top breed is the genetic mutant known as the Bulldog, so I've lost faith in people buying dogs that fit their lifestyle and buying breeds that are "healthy".

Back to the snake. There's lots of skepticism as to whether a snake can kill 2 kids relatively silently. But if it's not the snake then the story becomes a lot more sinister.

As for the argument that a retail outlet with apartments upstairs can be a zoo, that maybe true, but it doesn't make it right.

Here's a story in today's Sun where a reptile expert show palpable outrage over the incident.

http://www.torontosun.com/2013/08/06/pet-store-owner-in-shock-python-kills-two-kids-in-new-brunswick

The snake wasn't in the "zoo" it was in an adjacent apartment. AND this isn't the first time the snake has apparently escaped. If I lived in any shared building like an apartment building, and I know a person in that building had a snake like this, I'd be calling animal control ASAP.

If it's discovered that this snake did in fact kill these boys, a criminal charge better be in the cards.

Edited by Boges

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Oh god...you're one of those misinformed dangerous breed people? There's no such thing as a more dangerous breed of dog. It all comes down to the individual animal and how it's raised, trained, and treated by its owners.

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If anyone wants more information about pitbulls, there's a well-researched article from a vet on WebMD about the breed and breed-specific legislation here: http://pets.webmd.com/dogs/features/pit-bulls-safety

Discovery also has an article discussing the notion of dangerous pit bulls: http://news.discovery.com/animals/zoo-animals/pit-bulls-dangerous-1205151.htm

Perhaps the best article on them is from the ASPCA though: http://www.aspca.org/pet-care/virtual-pet-behaviorist/dog-behavior/truth-about-pit-bulls

Anyway, this is not the same thing as exotic animals, so it's completely beside the point here.

Edited by cybercoma

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Oh god...you're one of those misinformed dangerous breed people? There's no such thing as a more dangerous breed of dog. It all comes down to the individual animal and how it's raised, trained, and treated by its owners.

Like the government of Ontario people?

Dogs were bred for certain purposes. Some are bred to look like faceless gargoyles ei the Pug, French Bulldog, English Bulldog and the Pekingese. I'm opposed to these dogs because they were bred for their look, not for their health. It's genetic mutation.

Some were bred for assisting in hunting like flushing out birds or "retrieving" birds. These are popular dogs but not dogs that should live in apartments or cities, they need constant exercise. You need to keep dogs active or they'll get bored and become troublesome. Bird Dogs like Spaniels are alright because they're relatively small and can achieve decent exercise by decent walking.

Some were bred for herding cattle and sheep. There's a trend for people buying a boarder collies because it's determined to be the smartest breed or an Aussie Sheppeard (I guess cuz they have cool blue eyes). People who buy these dogs in an urban environment are also knobs. You can see these dogs in dog parks. They're genetically disposed to herd everything. They also require a great deal of exercise.

And some are bred for functions like fighting, guarding or killing large game. Now here's where it gets complicated and contentious. I'll concede that good responsible dog owners can breed and raise these "fighting" breeds to be great dogs. But just like people who feel they need to own an assault rifle, people buy these dogs not because they're good companions, they buy them precisely because of their heritage as violent dogs. Is it manly for an adult male to own a Yorkie or a Pug? How bout a Rottie or a Pit Bull?

Do no it's not a problem with the dog as much as the owner, but you have to ask what type of person wants a dog that has violence bred into them.

Edited by Boges

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Like the government of Ontario people?

Yes. The government of Ontario made a populist decision that has been heavily criticized by veterinarians and others that actually spend their life studying and being around these animals.

Dogs were bred for certain purposes.

Yes. This is all addressed in the links I provided. Please read them. Pitbulls were bred for dog fighting, so they may be more aggressive towards other dogs. That's if the owner isn't diligent about socializing them and training them. However, if you want to go with the breeding argument, then you need to reconcile it with the fact that pitbulls were put down if they showed any aggression whatsoever towards humans. One of the articles mentions how owners would stand in the pits with the dogs as they were fighting and they would even bathe their opponents dogs. So any dog that was aggressive towards people was put down. When you invoke the gene and breeding argument, then you need to reconcile the fact that they destroyed dogs aggressive to people through the selective breeding process.

Some were bred for assisting in hunting like flushing out birds or "retrieving" birds. These are popular dogs but not dogs that should live in apartments or cities, they need constant exercise. You need to keep dogs active or they'll get bored and become troublesome.

Yes to your last sentence. They need to be active. No to your idea of banning them from cities or apartments. A responsible dog owner will get their pet the exercise it needs and understand the physical activity requirements of their breed. A reputable breeder won't sell a dog to someone who they don't believe can handle the responsibility. What we don't need is a blanket ban saying no one in the city or an apartment can have these dogs because there are certainly people that can be responsible with them. People that aren't responsible with them will likely have their home destroyed by a bored dog chewing and ripping things up to keep its mind active.

And some are bred for functions like fighting, guarding or killing large game. Now here's where it gets complicated and contentious. I'll concede that good responsible dog owners can breed and raise these "fighting" breed to be great dogs. But just like people who feel they need to own an assault rifle, people buy these dogs not because they're good companions, they buy them precisely because of their heritage as violent dogs. Is it manly for an adult male to own a Yorkie or a Pug? How bout a Rottie or a Pit Bull?

This is undeniably false. I've known many people with pitbulls and my family had one growing up. No one that I know who had a pitbull had one for the reason you say. They're intelligent and affectionate animals that make great companions. What you've said is unequivocally false. There are some a******s that buy dogs to fight and train them to be aggressive (F*** You, Michael Vick), but in my personal experience I've known many people who've had these dogs and not a single one had it for those reasons.

Do no it's not a problem with the dog as much as the owner, but you have to ask what type of person wants a dog that has violence bred into them.

I find it incredibly insulting that you question the character of a person for owning these dogs because you lack the imagination to see past your own bias about these animals. They make fine companions and are some of the sweetest, most intelligent animals I have been around. In contrast, some of the most aggressive dogs towards people that I've seen are chihuahuas and jack russells. Those dogs are insanely aggressive and do lash out at people all the time. And again, it comes down to training. People don't see those dogs as a mortal threat, so they don't put them in check when they show aggression. Left unchecked, they become some of the most violent dogs towards people I've ever seen, despite being highly unlikely to kill a person.

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I've never said I support banning any breed. In fact recently I've seen people near me that have puppies that look suspiciously like Pit Bulls. Pit Bulls aren't a specific pedigree breed so that makes it more complicated.

I fully concede that smaller breeds are neurotic and people gloss over their problems because they are small.

It's anecdotal but in my experience with my own dog I do notice far more aggression towards my dog from these so called "power breeds". And I'm also more weary of them because I know the potential damage they can cause. Then again there's also a Jack Russell near me when I see the owner walking by, I avoid because that dog has tried to bite my dog.

It's all about the owner and never the dog's fault, but I do think you're minimizing the appeal that a menacing looking dog has to a person that's only really interested in owning the dog because of fact it's a power breed.

There are no rules and people should be allowed to purchase any dog they wish, it's my job as a dog owner to be aware of my dog's surroundings and take the needed precautions.

In all honestly, I'm more opposed to breeds that are bred for a "look" that's unhealthy than I am, weary about power breeds.

I don't support banning dogs, but going back to the OP, I support banning people owning wild animals that are apex predators.

Edited by Boges

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My neighbor has an animal that has 98% of the chromosomes of a wolf. It's a (presumably vicious) black lab.

At least when you are trying to make a comparison .. make a decent comparison.

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CC, I'm for banning pitbulls and it really makes no difference to me whether they're less likely to attack than a chihuahua or whether it's bad ownership/training that makes them act out. The only relevant fact for me is the amount of damage that they inflict when they do attack.

They kill more than any other dog. Coupled with your argument that they're less likely to strike, that means they kill in exponentially higher ratios than any other dog.

Oh and they're always nice family dogs before they kill. Every single pit bull story has the same disbelief from the owner about what a good dog the pit bull was before the attack. Every single one.

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