Richmond considering ban on exotic pets

Posted at 10:41 AM, May 22, 2023

RICHMOND, Va. — Richmond is considering a ban on owning exotic or wild animals in the city.

The proposed ordinance will be a topic of discussion at Monday night's city council meeting, happening at 6 p.m. in City Hall.

The ban would prohibit residents from keeping monkeys, raccoons, opossums, skunks, squirrels, wolves, coyotes, foxes, leopards, panthers, tigers, lions, lynx, bobcats, bears or any other warm-blooded animal which can normally be found in the wild.

Venomous or poisonous reptiles and amphibians or any member of the crocodile family would also be banned.

Ferrets, rabbits, chinchillas, sugar gliders, hedgehogs, hamsters, gerbils, guinea pigs, mice and rats that have been in captivity and have never known the wild, as well as domestically bred or legally imported birds, non-venomous reptiles, amphibians and fish would not be considered “exotic or wild animals," according to the ordinance.

If the ordinance is adopted, anyone found guilty of owning an exotic or wild animal in the city could be found guilty of a class 3 misdemeanor.

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