The Instigator
Splashstorm
Pro (for)
Losing
6 Points
The Contender
XStrikeX
Con (against)
Winning
10 Points

All Wild Animals SHOULD NOT Be Banned Pets

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 3 votes the winner is...
XStrikeX
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 6/25/2012 Category: Miscellaneous
Updated: 4 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 15,829 times Debate No: 24440
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (15)
Votes (3)

 

Splashstorm

Pro

Wild animals do not make dangerous pets. That is a GIANT myth, spread by the media (with overly-exaggerated stuff like "Fatal Attractions," as an example).

Check this out:
Most Dangerous Pets
-->the percentage is the percent of the population of the animals as a whole attacking (ones kept as PRIVATE pets only, not in zoos etc.).

[For example: for dogs, .05% of their entire population will attack someone.
For tigers, .001% of their entire population will attack someone.
The higher the percentage, the more risk of attack from the particular animal.]

1. Dogs .05%
2. Horses .02%
3. Just Everyday Living .007%
4. Tigers .001%
5. Primates (all primates were counted) .0002%
6. Wolfdogs .00001%

This is how I came up with the numbers:
**Please note, the way I did this obviously took into account the fact that there are WAY more dogs out there than any other exotic pets.

Dogs:
There are 78 million dogs in the US. There are 4 million dog attacks in the US a year.
.05% of the dog population attacks a year.

Wolfdogs:
There are 250,000 wolfdogs in the US. There are 3 wolfdog attacks a year.
.000012% of wolfdogs attack a year.

Tigers:
There are 10,000 tigers in the US (that belong to private individuals/groups.) There are 15 tiger attacks a year.
.0015% of privately owned pet tigers attack a year.

Just Living:
You have a .007% chance of dying every year by just living.

Primates (all primate types were counted):
There are 15,000 primates kept as pets in the US. There are 4 attacks a year.
You have a .0002% chance of being attacked by your pet primate.

Horses:
There are about 7,300,000 horses kept as pets in the US. 205,000 people are injured a year by them.
There is a .02% chance of you being injured with your horse.

So you see, you should be more scared of walking in the street and being mauled by a random dog than you should be coming home to your wolf, tiger, or ape.

I do not think any wild animal should be banned as pets, but that there should be such strict regulations that only the RESPONSIBLE owners will be able to obtain them. By responsible, I mean someone who will be able to provide zoo-like enclosures and care.

I do not want anything less than that for these wild animals, but with all these random bans, even those very responsible owners are not allowed these animals. Why should the MINORITY spoil it for the rest of us? Also, America does not have this kind of attitude with anything else, so why should they have this attitude with exotics? Why not ban all dogs? 4 million attacks a year is like 6,666 attacks a month in each of the 50 states. That's A LOT. Why not ban cars? Each time you get in a car you are subjecting yourself to 3x the danger you'd be in if you actually owned a pet tiger.

Check out this interesting little excerpt from: http://www.hamra.net...
"HOW GULLIBLE ARE WE ?

A freshman at ... [a] Junior High [school] won first prize at the ... Science Fair... He was attempting to show how conditioned we have become to the alarmists ... spreading fear of everything in our environment.

In his project he urged people to sign a petition demanding strict control or total elimination of the chemical "dihydrogen monoxide." And for plenty of good reasons, since:

it can cause excessive sweating and vomiting;
it is a major component in acid rain;
it can cause severe burns in its gaseous state;
accidental inhalation can kill you;
it contributes to erosion;
it decreases effectiveness of automobile brakes;
it has been found in tumors of terminal cancer patients.
He asked 50 people if they supported a ban of the chemical. Forty-three said yes, six were undecided, and only one knew that the chemical was water.
The title of his prize winning project was, "How Gullible Are We?"

The conclusion is obvious."

Ask yourself, are you sure that isn't happening right now with the whole exotic pet subject? They want to spread wild fear and angst at just the mention of "exotic pet." But what are their fears based on? Not facts, that's certain. Of course there will be freak accidents, but is that the norm? No, but AR groups would have you believe it was. The majority of exotic pet owners do not abuse their animals. The animals do not succumb to their "wild instincts" and savagely attack the hand that fed them. All of these (and more) are myths that have been busted when you look at the actual statistics. Please people, do not be gullible.

Did you know that all Animal Rights groups are going after exotics-- EVERY kind: mice, parrots, snakes, lizards, etc.? No, not just exotics, they are going after ALL pets. If you look closely at their agenda, you will see that (it isn't just PETA, the others are just being a little more discreet about their views).

And by the way, what is more logical? A kitten bought for $300 being neglected and abused, or a man who goes and invests thousands and thousands of dollars for the enclosure and cost of his bear, just to abuse and neglect it in the end? The thing is, most irresponsible people won't even waste their energy on trying to obtain an exotic animal (it's not only the money, but lots of times there are permits and licenses to get through). So the majority of exotic pet owners are responsible. They would have made sure they were ready for such a huge investment.

Going back to the Animal Rights groups, us pet people must stick together, because they are starting with the exotic pets, and once they have them, they will continue on with the rest of your pets. This is not opinion, it's RIGHT THERE on their mission statements (but they never bring it up.. Hmm.. wonder why?) They want to see the end of pets because they don't see it as humane. They will argue the same arguments they currently have in place for exotics, but to domestics. That's their plan, and it always has been.

Look here at the big "three" (PETA, HSUS, ASPCA): http://oisforonward.com...
XStrikeX

Con

Thank you, Splashstorm for starting this debate.

I'm sure this will be a fun, fulfilling 5 rounds of debate. :)

Now let's debate.

The Proposition case has several points.
A) Domesticated animals are more dangerous than wild ones.
B) Stricter regulations will ensure that responsible owners will be able to obtain them.
C) People are gullible; the fear of wild animals is untrue.

Refutations

Pro Point 1) Domesticated Animals are more dangerous than wild ones.

The Proposition brings some interesting evidence into this debate. This evidence comes from... himself, taking factual numbers and calculating his own numbers. I will not say that they are incorrect, but rather, that my opponent has not taken many things into account. Furthermore, they are not backed by any sources.

The Proposition claims that domesticated dogs are more dangerous than most wild animals; therefore, since dogs are allowed, wild animals should be allowed. On the other hand, the amount of dogs in the US is much, much higher than any wild animal. These "dog attacks" are merely bites. Very few are fatalities, whereas wild animal attacks are much, much more severe (I will prove this in my arguments).

Another factor to take into account is that many wild animals exist in zoo enclosures, where they have little close interaction with humans, limiting basically all harm.

Another factor is that many wild animals live in the wild. Wolfdogs? They don't roam the streets. They're in the wild, far away from humans. They're even shier than dogs and generally do not approach humans... provided that the human is not an idiot and provokes the wolfdog.

Wild animals attacks are fatal and most times an attack occurs, a life is taken. This doesn't happen with dogs.

Why not ban cars?

Because we actually need cars to get around. And some people need dogs or cats for companions. Tigers? Bears? No, not really.

Lastly, the Pro mentions "horses." When you think of wild animals, do you think "horses"? I doubt it. Horses should be excluded, though this is trivial.

Pro Point 2) Stricter regulations are necessary to ensure the "responsible" can get wild animals.

The strictest regulation (and the smartest one) is just not allowing anyone to obtain wild animals at all. Many places don't allow the possession of a wild animal and for good reason.

How would one even determine who is responsible? Is one "responsible" if he/she has a lot of money? In that case, only the rich could own wild animals because they cost so much. The Pro claims that "the minority" is ruining it for the majority, that the bad wild pet owners are ruining it for the good wild pet owners. On the contrary, it's only the minority, the rich, that can HAVE the wild pet int he first place.

Mention some strict regulations you have in mind, please.

Pro Point 3) The threat of wild animals is a lie passed around by the media, and people are gullible.

Or some people are just dumb sometimes and didn't really have time to listen to a raving freshman.
Regardless, wild animals are a serious threat, and they have not been "exaggerated" by the media. If anything, the media has failed to cover many major attacks on TV. These attacks are not fiction. They are not false. And the seemingly "freak accidents" that occur, are not rare, but common. I will prove this in my speech.

Lastly, the Pro goes on some random tangent on about how Animal Rights groups will do something to domestic pets. I find this entirely irrelevant, without evidence or proof, and an incorrect claim. He says "they," "their," a bunch of pronouns, but they're not really directed towards anyone, just Animal Rights groups in general. And it seems ludicrous that they want to "see the end of pets".

Arguments

1. Wild animals physically injure and/or kill people

Keeping wild animals as pets can be dangerous. Many can bite, scratch, and attack an owner, children, or guests. Animal owners can be legally responsible for any damage, injuries or illnesses caused by animals they maintain [1].

There have been many instances in which wild animals have attacked their owners [2].

Travis the chimp once seriously mauled a woman who had to fend him off with a knife. When police arrived, he went after them too until he was shot.

In fact, primate attacks are pretty common [2].

August 2006, Chicago: A 14-year-old girl was hospitalized after a pet rhesus macaque monkey escaped from a cage. The girl's arm was reportedly "bitten to the bone."

June 2005, Morehead, Kentucky: A monkey reached through a car window and grabbed and bit a drive-thru worker, while the primate's owner was picking up an order.

August 2000, Jessamine County, Kentucky: A woman who was eight months pregnant was hospitalized after one of her two pet rhesus macaques attacked her when their cages were being cleaned.

Visit the second source for even more primate attacks.

Let's not forget tiger attacks either.

2003, Millers Creek, North Carolina: Ruth Bynum's 400 pound Bengal tiger dragged her 10-year-old nephew under a fence and into his cage, where the boy was mauled to death.

August 2005, Clackamas, Oregon:
Pet lynx escapes and pounces on six-year old girl, clawing on her head.

Visit the second source for even more tiger attacks.

There are cases of pet bear attacks and pet reptile attacks. Simply visit the second source for more evidence.

2. Wild animals carry a wide range of diseases or parasites.

Wild animals can carry diseases dangerous or fatal to humans. Diseases include rabies, distemper, herpes viruses, salmonella, polio, tuberculosis, Rocky Mountain spotted fever and bubonic plague. Wild animals also harbor parasites, such as intestinal worms and protozoa [1].

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention 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. Tens of thousands of people get Salmonella infections each year from reptiles or amphibians, causing the CDC to recommend that these animals be kept out of homes with children under five. A 2003 outbreak of monkeypox was set in motion when African rodents carrying the disease were imported for the pet trade and infected native prairie dogs, who were also sold as pets [3][4].

3. Having wild animals as pets limits their own survival.

If having wild animals is legal in the US, then there will be a large demand for them. Animals will have to be captured, transported from different places all over the world. This limits their own survival.

For example, parrots are the world's most endangered family of birds due to devastation from the international pet trade. The enormous global demand for these and other exotic pets is fueling the illegal capture and trade of millions of animals, most of which die during transportation [1].

4. People can't take care of them.

Taking care of an exotic pet is no easy feat; it sucks your resources if you're willing to provide for the animal and it hurts the animal's natural behavior as well.

Veterinarian Kevin Wright of the Phoenix Zoo in Arizona says primates are highly intelligent, emotionally complex, and long-lived animals that need to be around their own kind in order to develop normally.

"If you try to keep them as pets you're creating a mentally disturbed animal in 99.9 percent of the cases," said Wright, director of conservation, science and sanctuary at the zoo. "The animal will never be able to fit in any other home. Never learn how to get along with other monkeys. And, more often than not, will end up with a lot of behavioral traits that are self-destructive." [4]

I look forward to hearing from the Proposition.

Sources:
1. http://www.aza.org...
2. http://www.thedailygreen.com...
3. http://www.humanesociety.org...
4. http://news.nationalgeographic.com...

Debate Round No. 1
Splashstorm

Pro

There was a slight misunderstanding. I want to make it clear that I didn't mean that every domesticated animal is more dangerous than exotics. The reason I chose to compare dogs and horses was because they are commonly kept pets that can also prove dangerous at times. Many large predators, when kept as pets, are not as dangerous as dogs or horses.

Let's start with the dog. Centuries of selective breeding has bred out quite a lot of fear in them. When compared to other creatures, dogs are one of the most fearless. For so long, they were bred to charge recklessly into danger-- something that, if practiced in the wild, would destroy other species. This is why dogs are more prone to bite than most other wild animals when kept as pets (with some exceptions, like poisonous snakes). A wild animal in captivity would rather avoid confrontations, because it is in their nature to do so. Fear has not been bred out. That is the reason for so many dog attacks.

Horses were also compared alongside dogs because they are one of the most dangerous commonly kept animals (cattle is first). My point in comparing these animals is this: if we can allow such "dangerous" animals in our lives every day, in every state, why ban other less dangerous animals simply because they are perceived as vicious in the wild? Most of an animal's reputation for viciousness is just because of the way they hunt or fight for territory. People think, "It'll treat you like prey, too." But where is the proof?

Here are the sources for my statistics:
78 million dogs in the US. http://www.humanesociety.org...
4 million dog attacks in the US a year. http://www.americanhumane.org...
After doing the math (this is done by dividing 4 million by 78 million), I found that .05 is the percentage of the dog population that ever attacks anyone in the US.

7,300,000 horses kept as pets in the US. http://www.avma.org...
205,000 people injured a year by them. http://www.drsanjaydesai.com...

10,000 tigers in the US (that are kept solely as pets.) http://www.usatoday.com...
15 tiger attacks a year:
"...incidents in the U.S. involving captive exotic cats since 1990. The U.S. incidents have resulted in the deaths of 21 humans, ... the additional mauling of 247 more..." http://bigcatrescue.org...


The above website did not specify which species of big cats were involved in any of the attacks, and so obviously it also didn't specify in what environments the tigers were kept. This is important to know because tigers owned as pets are less prone to attack than tigers in zoos or sanctuaries, as shown here:http://www.rexano.org...;

What does this all mean for tigers? They can possibly be much less dangerous than what my percentage shows. All I've proven is that big cats on average attack 15 times per year in captivity. Tiger attacks would be considerably less, and lesser even still when you only look at the tigers kept as pets. (I couldn't find statistics aimed directly at pet tiger attacks per year, so in my statistics I chose to have them seem more dangerous than they really are. That way, you can be sure I am not being purposely deceitful for my own gains. Even then, however, their attack stats still come up better than dogs'.)

15,000 primates kept as pets in the US (this includes all kinds, not just the great apes).http://news.nationalgeographic.com...
4 attacks a year. http://www.rexano.org..., like with the tiger, these statistics are on how many deaths, not attacks, were caused by primates, so I apologize. I did these stats a while ago, and at the time it took me a very long time to find my information. I can't find the same sites I found then. There is an average of 0 deaths a year from any kind of primate in any setting. That is pretty incredible, seeing as there are 15,000 that are just pets, and many more in zoos and such places. That alone shows that primates do not deserve their horrible reputation.

250,000 wolfdogs in the US. http://www.graywolfconservation.com...
3 wolfdog attacks a year. http://wolfwhisper.homestead.com...


"These "dog attacks" are merely bites. Very few are fatalities, whereas wild animal attacks are much, much more severe (I will prove this in my arguments). "

I would beg to differ. There are far more dog bites from small dogs that are never documented. Those are the ones that are mere bites. The bites that are documented are full on attacks.


"Another factor to take into account is that many wild animals exist in zoo enclosures, where they have little close interaction with humans, limiting basically all harm. Another factor is that many wild animals live in the wild... Wild animals attacks are fatal and most times an attack occurs, a life is taken. This doesn't happen with dogs."

I took all this into account with my statistics, as is obvious above where I sited my sources. I did not include zoo animals nor wild animals. And why is it that you keep stating how much more fatal wild animal attacks are? Where is your proof? I would imagine any large animal attacking you can easily turn fatal.


My opponent also implies that wolfdogs occur mostly in the wild. The truth is, wolfdogs rarely ever occur in the wild.

"...some people need dogs or cats for companions. Tigers? Bears? No, not really."

How can you say that some people need dogs or cats, but not tigers or bears? Many people have different opinions on what it is they need. Some, like myself, could never be fulfilled with simple domestics. So in that sense, I would not hesiatate to say that I need exotics.

"How would one even determine who is responsible?"
No, it would not be based on money. I think it would astonish many to realize that raising a wolf, for instance, is far cheaper than raising one child. Exotic pets are not as expensive as many make it out to be (more on this later). Besides having the financial capabilities to care for an animal, a person's background should be checked, and he should have to pass a difficult test to prove that he truly knows enough about the animal he wants.

"...wild animals are a serious threat, and they have not been "exaggerated" by the media. If anything, the media has failed to cover many major attacks on TV."

Again, if this were true, why have the statistics not proven so?


"...the Pro goes on some random tangent on about how Animal Rights groups will do something to domestic pets. I find this entirely irrelevant, without evidence or proof, and an incorrect claim."

Here is my proof, and this is not the only source: http://www.freewebs.com...

Con's Argument:

Wild animals physically injure and/or kill people
But the question is, are there possibly enough attacks in proportion to their population to deem them more dangerous than dogs?

Wild animals carry a wide range of diseases or parasites.

Yes, but these are wild animals. Most exotic pets were born in captivity. They are not caught from the wild, nor pulled away from dens, etc.

Having wild animals as pets limits their own survival.

If there was a high demand for exotics, that would also mean more people would be breeding them in captivity. And, again, with such strict regulations, only responsible owners would even get the chance to go out and request one. That would ensure that the US will not be booming with everyone going out and getting an emu, for example. They simply would not qualify.

People can't take care of them.
Again, if someone can't take care of an exotic properly, they should not be allowed one. I'm running out of room, but later on in our debate I would like to state the reasons why exotic pet care is oftentimes thought to be more costly than it really is.

Thank you for a wonderful debate so far! :)
XStrikeX

Con

Thanks for the reply, Splashstorm.

Refutations

"My point in comparing these animals is this: if we can allow such "dangerous" animals in our lives every day, in every state, why ban other less dangerous animals simply because they are perceived as vicious in the wild?"

By such "dangerous" animals, I'm assuming you mean "dogs" and "horses" because that's what your opening statement is all about. The reason why we ban these wild animals is because they indeed are dangerous, as I have shown in the last round. The reason why we have animals like dogs and horses is for several reasons.

Firstly, sometimes these domesticated animals are necessary. Horses can be used for transportation. Dogs are for companionship and friendship, whereas you don't need to cuddle with an exotic animal, like a tiger.
Secondly, sometimes dogs are used for defense, like guard dogs.
Third, animals like horses are used for sport, as in equestrians.

So let's focus mainly on dogs. The Proposition's point is mainly about how dogs "often" act violently and are bad. Therefore, because they're worse than wild animals, we should have wild animals as pets.

He claims that there are many attacks from dogs, citing multiple sources, except one is a dead link (the one about tigers, though, the "Rexano" one). Anyway, let's examine these attacks, using his own source from the American Humane Association. http://www.americanhumane.org...

4.7 million bites occur in the U.S. each year, approximately. That's quite a bit, but it's not necessary a fatality. My opponent begs to differ, but it's true, very few are fatalities.
"At least 25 different breeds of dogs have been involved in the 238 dog-bite-related fatalities in the U.S."
238? Doesn't seem very deadly after all.

"50% of dog attacks involved children under 12 years old."
"Bite rates are dramatically higher among children who are 5 to 9 years old."
So many attacks seem to occur on young children. I'll explain why this is relevant in a bit.

If you navigate further down the web page, you'll find that parents need to "educate" their kids and there are "safe rules of behavior for kids."
So you see, dogs are just provoked by young kids when they do silly things. Any creature can be provoked by a young child if that kid doesn't know how to act around it. This is even truer for a wild animal. A dog doesn't necessarily attack when a young kid pulls its ear, but a tiger? The chances are much more likely.
In conclusion, these bites aren't fatal, and they mostly occur on young kids who don't understand. You cannot use dogs as an excuse for the keeping of wild animals.

The Proposition moves on to say that some people need creatures like tigers or bears opposed to a common domestic creature. I think this number of people is relatively few. Regardless, it's a matter of safety, and domestics are pretty safe, unlike wild animals.

"Besides having the financial capabilities to care for an animal, a person's background should be checked, and he should have to pass a difficult test to prove that he truly knows enough about the animal he wants."

Background? What would we be searching for? That they're not a poacher or some exotic pet trader? How does a good background equate to responsibility?
Furthermore, why a test of knowledge? Many pet owners don't know about their own domestic pet, yet they don't have to pass a test.
The thing is, either this "responsibility test" completely and utterly fails, or people will just be unsatisfied because they were deemed "irresponsible" as to whether or not they could have a pet.
Do you have actual evidence of a plan that may actually work?

The Proposition somewhat refuses to drop the contention that Animal Rights groups will do something to our domestic pets. He believes that a source means credible evidence. If you look at the source, it's from "freewebs" and seems very not credible to me. It seems to have been written by a teenage girl who is obsessed over animals.

Refuting the Refutations

"Yes, but these are wild animals. Most exotic pets were born in captivity. They are not caught from the wild, nor pulled away from dens, etc."

I don't know if the statement that most exotic pets are born in captivity is true, but regardless, I'll refute it. Even if the animals are born in captivity or reared in a zoo, they still have the potential to get a disease.
http://wwwnc.cdc.gov...

"Exposure to captive wild animals at circuses or zoos can also be a source of zoonotic infection."
"Petting zoos, where children are allowed to approach and feed captive wildlife and domestic animals, have been linked to several zoonotic outbreaks."
This is the most important.
"Emerging infectious diseases have a major effect on human health and can create tremendous economic losses. Animals, particularly wild animals, are thought to be the source of >70% of all emerging infections."

"If there was a high demand for exotics, that would also mean more people would be breeding them in captivity."

Except there isn't. You don't see protestors on the doorstep of Washington begging the government to allow wild pets. It's simply not a big issue.

"And, again, with such strict regulations, only responsible owners would even get the chance to go out and request one."

Such strict regulations as the ones you suggested? Those aren't very strict.
People in the exotic pet trade don't care if you're responsible or not. They just want money. And if you have money, they'll give you the pet; it means nothing about the wild money. It's a matter of how much you have financially.

So the debate thus far has seem to boiled down to this. Statistics. The Proposition has his own statistics, generated from his sources, but using his math. I don't know whether or not it's true, but I'll go with it.

On the issue of statistics, here is credible evidence.

There have been 75 deaths from 1990-2011. http://www.livescience.com...

90% of reptiles carry and shed salmonella in their feces.
There have been 1610 reported incidents involving exotic pets.
"Born Free USA, a nonprofit advocacy organization that strives to end the ownership of wild animals, has documented some 1,500 attacks, including 75 human deaths, escapes and other incidents involving exotic pets since 1990..."
"In the end, exotic pets are not safe to keep in people's homes, advocates say."

But I'd like you to know that the danger of keeping a wild pet is more of a minor point.
I'd like to talk more about the health of the wild animals themselves.

Firstly, the possession of wild animals hurts nature itself. In the states that do not regulate or do not fully regulate the possession of wild animals, there exist about 15000 pet tigers according to my opponent. That's more than there are in the wild. According to the above source, about 3,200 tigers are left in the wild. The idea that there are more tigers in zoos and houses rather than in the wild is shocking and horrible.

Secondly, people can't take care of wild animals.

"Once owners realize they can't handle the animals, they look to place them in other homes.

Zoos don't take former pets. Some unwanted primates end up in sanctuaries to live out their remaining days. Sadly, most end up being sold and resold over and over again. Others are sent to laboratories or used in breeding programs.

As pets grow older, stronger and more unpredictable, some owners may attempt to change the animal's natural behavior. Sanctuary owners say those tactics include confinement in small enclosures, chaining, shocking, beating, and removal of teeth and nails to prevent scratching and biting.

On average, April Truitt of the Primate Rescue Center receives two phone calls a day from people who want to relinquish their animals." http://news.nationalgeographic.com...

There's a reason why they're called "wild."
I look forward to the response.
Debate Round No. 2
Splashstorm

Pro

My opponent claims that domesticated animals are necessary, but exotics are not. Therefore, domesticated animals should not be banned along with exotics despite their risks. I would venture to say that horses are not the primary mode of transportation anymore. If they were, then cannot we keep camels for transportation too? Why limit it to horses? And you can cuddle with many other animals than just a dog. What about a serval or sloth? Those creatures are known to be extremely affectionate. Also, which house would thiefs be more afraid of: one with a dog or a lion? And horses used as sport? That isn't a need. I think most can agree that pets aren't usually a necessity anymore.

"The Proposition's point is mainly about how dogs "often" act violently and are bad."

They are not "often" bad and violent. As you can see, the percentage of dogs that do attack is very low: .05%. Yet other creatures, that happen to have a lower score, are deemed so dangerous as to be banned.

I admit, with wild animals, you have to be a little more cautious. I don't think just anyone should be able to own one. But my point is, they are just as safe as domestics in the right hands. Bans should not be placed on these animals. There are so much more dangerous things that are legal. Why make exotic pets the exception?

Imagine if little kids who went rock climbing without prior instructions was the norm? That would definitely increase the risk of fatalities, wouldn't it? But it isn't the norm, therefore, rock climbing death statistics wouldn't be as high as it would be if it were. It's the exact same thing with exotic animals. Death tolls could be a lot higher if just anyone was allowed one, but that isn't the case (and shouldn't be the case), and that is why there are less exotic pet bites than dog bites.

No child should be left alone with any large animal, not just dogs. That is a given. Supervised, incidents rarely ever occur. Notice most exotic pet attacks are on unsupervised children? They tend to run around and throw tantrums, which are very similar to the actions of struggling prey. http://www.michigan.gov...

"The Proposition moves on to say that some people need creatures like tigers or bears opposed to a common domestic creature. I think this number of people is relatively few. Regardless, it's a matter of safety, and domestics are pretty safe, unlike wild animals."

It's very safe to say that the demand for exotics has grown exponentially in the past years. Also, would it really matter how many people want exotics? And wild animals are pretty safe in the right hands. You have no proof that they are more dangerous than even riding a motorcycle (which is not a necessity, yet it is more dangerous than owning a pet tiger-- therefore, shouldn't it be banned?)

My opponent questioned my idea of background checks and tests of knowledge as qualifiers for keeping exotics, deeming them worthless. I am not claiming to have a plan for anything. I was simply suggesting ideas that might work. However, in general, a person should have to pass some sort of criteria in order to own an exotic pet. If bans were lifted, surely all these procedures would be written out clearly on some sort of official form. The criteria would of course be different for each species. If we can make it strict enough, and think it out more clearly (in which I'm sure we would be given plenty of time), everyone could be happy. If someone doesn't pass the restrictions, why grieve? An innocent animal's life would be spared from abuse or neglect.

"Many pet owners don't know about their own domestic pet, yet they don't have to pass a test."

That may be so, but owning a hippo is not the same as a cat or dog. I would not allow anyone to buy a hippo from me if he didn't know the basics of it's husbandry. However, I think there should be tests for ordinary pet owners as well. That would certainly decrease the amount of pet abuse and neglect in this country.

"The Proposition somewhat refuses to drop the contention that Animal Rights groups will do something to our domestic pets. He believes that a source means credible evidence. If you look at the source, it's from "freewebs" and seems very not credible to me. It seems to have been written by a teenage girl who is obsessed over animals."

Does it matter who wrote the site? She has many credible sources to back up her claims. Anyway, here is more proof for my case:

The HSUS (Humane Society of the United States) said: "We have no problem with the extinction of domestic animals." (They have also taken over Animal Planet, which is why the channel is now often referred to as "Animal Rights Planet." I'm not surprised they have an exaggerated show like "Fatal Attractions" to promote their views.)

Here is the source of the quote (plus many other quotes similar to it--some from PETA as well): http://www.mydogmychoice.com...

I said that most exotic animals were not pulled from the wild, and my opponent replied that he did not know whether or not it was true, but he'd refute it anyway. Well, here is a quote: "Most exotic animals ... are born in captivity, and not "stolen" from the wild." My source: http://www.usatoday.com...

My opponent is saying that a large part of why exotic pets should be banned is because they spread disease. This is true of reptiles as well. They are notorious for spreading salmonella. Why are they not banned?

"Animals, particularly wild animals, are thought to be the source of >70% of all emerging infections."

At the beginning of this sentence, "animals" can mean any kind of animal. "Particularly wild." Again, exotic animals are not wild animals. A wild bat has a very high rate of rabies, but a captive-born one will not.

My opponent claims the exotic pet issue is not a big deal, so there would not be as many people breeding them in captivity if there was a high demand for them. I am sure there are many who want to breed exotics, but do not, because either the animals are banned where they live, or they don't think there would be enough qualified people to buy from them. That would surely change if bans were lifted. Many more would go out and venture to learn more about the species they want, possibly becoming qualified enough to attempt such a feat.

"People in the exotic pet trade don't care if you're responsible or not. They just want money."

Most people in the exotic pet industry are actually very responsible. They just are not spotlighted in the media, unlike the rare incidents of pets gone wrong, so naturally you don't hear of them very often. As I have stated before, who would be more responsible? The man going out to get a $100 puppy, or the man who has to invest thousands and thousands of dollars for a tiger? Most who own exotics are not millionaires. They are usually normal people like you and I.

And yes, this debate has boiled down to statistics. The reason is that without statistics, the truth would never be seen. It has become too clouded from the media. I intend to to clear up this fog.

If 90% of reptiles carry salmonella like you stated, why do pet shops continue to sell them? Surely 90% is a huge risk, yet reptiles are among the most popular pets today. Why would that be allowed if disease was really such a huge issue?

My opponent states that he finds it horrible that there are more tigers in captivity than in the wild. My stance on that is that captive breeding eliminates the pressure on wild populations, and also serves as a backup in case the animals go extinct. If not for the ones in captivity, tigers could be in a lot more trouble than they are now.

My opponent then states that people should not own exotics because they cannot handle them. I agree that not everyone will be able to, but to say that no one can is incorrect. There are tens of thousands of exotic pets right now, living happy, fulfilled lives.

I happily await your next response.
XStrikeX

Con

Thank you for the swift response.

So, since it's pretty late in the debate, I'd like to sum up what's happening on both sides.

Proposition Points

1) Wild animals are just as safe as domesticated pets in the right hands.
2) The demand for wild pets has grown.
3) Animals Rights groups threaten domestic animals when wild animals are banned.

I deem #1 as the most critical point in the Pro case. #2 as more of just a premise for the concept of keeping wild animals. #3 as the most minor of all. I'll examine each individually.

1st Contention: Wild animals aren't as dangerous as many make them out to be.

So the argumentation on both sides on this issue has been a lot of statistics and past events.

The Pro admits that wild animals need a little more caution than domesticated animals. But he states that "they are just as safe as domestics in the right hands."

It is the concept of "the right hands," the idea that the responsible owners will be found... This is the proof my opponent has failed to provide. What are the right hands? Certainly a wild animal could be safe locked up in a cage and put behind giant steel bars. Then I would agree that safety is not an issue. But that doesn't help the wild animals. Neither does the Proposition case. It seems to neglect the feelings of the wild animals, whereas the Con side does. One could say that domesticated animals are neglected when they are adopted, but that's not true. Millions of cats are euthanized everyday, and they're being given a home when adopted. Not the same for wild animals.

So this responsibility is the essential information that is lacking in order for the 1st contention to hold true. In certain states where some wild animals are allowed to be kept, the responsibility tests don't seem to be working that well, considering at least two families wish to relinquish their pet primates every day (as I pointed out before), considering there have been 1610 incidents, considering people are killed, and that people abandon their wild animals.

If these formal tests of responsibility have failed in the states, why would the Proposition's work?
He mentioned background checks and didn't expand on what he meant by this.
He mentioned tests of knowledge as if those would really help.
If we make it too strict, the people who want exotic pets can't have them.
If we make it too loose, the irreponsible people will have them and accidents can occur.
As of the moment, it seems that the laws in states which permit them are not working all that well.
There may be people who are passionate about the creatures at first, but often times, that passion is lost over time.
How can one determine if you're testing a passionate animal lover or a greedy animal trafficker?

Throughout the rounds, you've mentioned the dangers of cars and motorcycles which I'd like to quickly answer.
The reason why we don't ban them is because they're necessary for transport. Some people prefer motorcycles to cars, especially if they live alone. Wild animals are unnecessary.

2nd Contention: The demand for exotic pets has grown.

Whether or not the demand has grown in the past years, I agree with my opponent that this point is trivial and has no value as to whether or not all wild animals should be banned as pets.

3rd Contention: Animals Rights groups threaten domestic pets and exotic pets.
This point is founded on one quote stating, "We have no problem with the extinction of domestic animals."
This quote was spoken in 1993 at an agricultural forum by Wayne Pacelle who blogs for the Humane Society of the US (the quote was said even before he joined HSUS).
At the time, Wayne was talking about "heirloom breeds" and how he believed the extinction of those breeds was not a major issue. A representative of an extreme and now defunct organization called Putting People First, present at this forum, took this passing comment about rare breeds of livestock and morphed it into a comment about all domesticated animals. http://hsus.typepad.com...

Many of his quotes have been twisted.

Opposition Points
1) The animals are hurt by poor owners.
2) Wild animals carry disease.
3) Wild animals can behave dangerously.

1st Contention: The animals are hurt by poor owners.

Proposition Response: Most people in the exotic pet industry are actually very responsible... I agree that not everyone will be able to [take care of them], but to say that no one can is incorrect. There are tens of thousands of exotic pets right now, living happy, fulfilled lives.

This is an assertion with no evidence on the idea of responsibility. The only way the Pro could back this point is with his plan of testing for responsibility... Or rather, his ideas for testing, which I have prove don't work.
The point stands because of the lack of counter-proof.

2nd Contention: Wild animals carry disease.

The Pro refutes this by stating that most wild animals are captive-bred.
While this may somewhat solve the problem of disease, captive-breeding introduces a multitude of problems.
Captive exotic animals are abused and exploited in a variety of settings, including research and product testing, the entertainment industry, fur farms, and the exotic “pet” trade.
Keeping wild animals in captivity is inherently cruel, as it deprives them of the ability to freely engage in instinctual behaviors in their natural environment.
Even when bred in captivity, exotic animals retain all of their natural instincts. They cannot be considered “domesticated” or “tamed.”
And a large number of even more problems. http://www.bornfreeusa.org...
Just visit the site.

Furthermore, there can still be issues with disease.
A potentially fatal fungal disease for frogs and toads was introduced into Mallorca after a captive-breeding program attempted to release the amphibians back into the wild. http://www.sciencedaily.com...

3rd Contention: Wild animals can be dangerous.

This coincides with the refutations of the Pro's first point. The right hands won't necessarily be found, the tests won't necessarily work, and the animals can react violently outside of their natural environment.

New 4th Contention: The allowing of exotic pet keeping can quickly escalate into an exotic pet trade.

For example, in the Gulf of the United Arab Emirates, many people have exotic pets not out of love.

Owning an endangered animal as a pet is illegal in the United Arab Emirates. However, the trade in endangered wildlife remains a problem in the Gulf, where owning expensive exotic pets, especially big cats, is the ultimate status symbol. A rare white lion sells for around $50,000 on the black market.

"If someone buys a very expensive animal, he is boasting that he has enough money to get anything he wants," he said. "If he has a tamed wild animal like a lion, he is trying to show off that he is brave. But this is not courage; this is animal rights abuse," says Jasim Ali, a tiger owner. http://www.cnn.com...

For these reasons, wild animals should not be kept as pets.

I look forward to the response and thank you for an excellent debate. :)
Debate Round No. 3
Splashstorm

Pro

Thank you for your response.

Without further ado, I will get on with the debate. :)

"It is the concept of "the right hands," the idea that the responsible owners will be found... What are the right hands? Certainly a wild animal could be safe locked up in a cage and put behind giant steel bars. Then I would agree that safety is not an issue. But that doesn't help the wild animals."


There are a handful of people that would be good exotic pet owners. Of course, domestic pets are abused everyday, and certainly if exotics were allowed to just anyone, the abuse problem would boom. This is not what I'm saying, however. Why don't we keep our current regulations, but lift all bans? In Wisconsin, they have no bans and require no permit on any exotic pet. [1] Does that mean there are more abuse cases and attacks there than in other states? No, there is not. Why should anyone believe it would happen if all 50 states were placed under strict regulations without bans? There are a couple states that do not have any bans on any animal (most of those require permits), yet attack statistics and the abuse problems do not increase. A wild animal locked up in a cage should not be considered "the right hands." That is abuse. Most exotic pet owners do not abuse their animals. They love them and treat them with great respect and care, just as most would treat the family dog or cat. The animals are not allowed to squander out a sad living in a cage.

"...considering at least two families wish to relinquish their pet primates every day (as I pointed out before), considering there have been 1610 incidents, considering people are killed, and that people abandon their wild animals."

Yes, but this is the case with domestic pets as well. Are you saying that because wild animals are relinquished to shelters they should all be banned, but when the same thing happens to domestics, we should still keep them? Why is this? And I have already given you statistics showing that exotic pets are just as safe as domestics. Those that are killed are freak accidents.

"As of the moment, it seems that the laws in states which permit them are not working all that well.
There may be people who are passionate about the creatures at first, but often times, that passion is lost over time.
How can one determine if you're testing a passionate animal lover or a greedy animal trafficker?"

Again, you can ask the same of domestic pet owners.

"Throughout the rounds, you've mentioned the dangers of cars and motorcycles which I'd like to quickly answer.
The reason why we don't ban them is because they're necessary for transport. Some people prefer motorcycles to cars, especially if they live alone. Wild animals are unnecessary."

Yes, but people are not shaking with fear everytime they get in a car or ride their motorcycles. So why should we be so afraid of exotic pets? Those things are far more dangerous than these exotic animals.

I stated that many exotic pet owners are very responsible, responding to Con's statement that people should not own exotics because they cannot take care of them. Con responded that that was not enough evidence to prove responsibility. Please elaborate on how it is not. The owners have enclosures, their animals are healthy and shows no signs of stress. Does this not speak of happiness and responsibility to you? What other proof would you need?

"Captive exotic animals are abused and exploited in a variety of settings, including research and product testing, the entertainment industry, fur farms, and the exotic “pet” trade."

Most exotic pets are not abused in any of these ways. How could they be? As I have already stated, most come from breeders who sell to individuals who meet their own standards. Most exotic pet breeders are responsible, educated people who are renowned in the exotic pet industry. Responsible owners do not participate in black market affairs.

Keeping wild animals in captivity is inherently cruel, as it deprives them of the ability to freely engage in instinctual behaviors in their natural environment.

My response: "This selfish desire to possess animals and receive love from them causes immeasurable suffering, which results from manipulating their breeding, selling or giving them away casually, and depriving them of the opportunity to engage in their natural behavior. They are restricted to human homes, where they must obey commands and can only eat, drink, and even urinate when humans allow them to.

Because domesticated animals retain many of their basic instincts and drives but are not able to survive on their own in the wild, dogs, cats, or birds, whose strongest desire is to be free, must be confined to houses, yards, or cages for their own safety." [2]

"The right hands won't necessarily be found, the tests won't necessarily work, and the animals can react violently outside of their natural environment."

When it comes to "the right hands," this goes for nearly everything else we do. Guns? Domestics? Cars? Alcohol? But why ban just exotics?

Con states that if exotic pets were allowed in the US, illegal trade can quickly become a problem. But why would it be? If someone would risk trouble with the law for something illegal, wouldn't they already be doing so right now as I type? Why would they wait for exotic pet bans to be lifted? So no, I don't think illegal activities would escalate. The ones that want to do bad would be at it already.

I think it would actually help the situation. A lot of animals that are smuggled in would then be legal in the US. That would inspire more captive breedings and less poaching (why get something illegally when you can get it legally and at a much lower cost?)

I look forward to Con's response!

Sources:
[1] http://www.bornfreeusa.org...
[2] http://www.peta.org...
XStrikeX

Con

Thanks for the reply!

Let's get into some refutations.

Refutations

1. On the issue of responsible owners, the Pro believes in keeping our current regulations and lifting all bans. In this case, he believes that there would be less wild animal abuse. However, one must realize that the only current regulations we have are virtually the bans. Permits do exist, but they're as easy to bypass as the Pro's alternate solutions.

The Pro makes the big claim that in places without bans or permits, there are not a larger number of attacks. If this is indeed the case, then it goes against the former stance the Pro took.
Formerly, the Proposition stated that regulations and tests were necessary to find the right owners for exotic pets. Now, the Pro says that by lifting the bans (the only piece of regulation that exists), attack and abuse rates won't increase.
Before, he said, with regulations, there will be fewer incidents from exotic pets.
Now, he says, without bans which is the only regulation that exists, there will be no increase in incidents from exotic pets.
It's a total contradiction.

2. The Opposition made the assertion that people cannot take care of exotic pets, evidenced by the number of familes who wish to release them. The Pro has never directly refuted this, but chooses to compare it to domestic animals. Domestic animals are abandoned by bad families sometimes. But when a dog is released into the street, it's not a big threat. When a tiger or a bear is released, it's much more of a problem.

3. The Opposition made the assertion that the current laws (obtaining a permit) are not working that well. As a result, the integrity of people can't be trusted. The Proposition does not defend the current laws which are clearly not working. Instead, he avoids the argument and links it back to domestic animals. Once again, the idea of comparing a domestic animal to a wild creature is silly. Domestic pet owners don't need to get a permit and this point is never directly refuted.

4. Back to the assertion that people cannot take care of exotic pets, the Pro responds with an assertion of his own. I said that there was not enough evidence to prove responsibility. The Pro continues with the statement that pet owners are very responsible and creates the idea of a place where wild animals have perfect enclosures and they're totally healthy. This isn't proof. I could talk about another world where wild animals are subjugated to extreme torment every single minute of their lives, but that isn't true either. The Pro has not proved that pet owners are responsible. I have proved they are irresponsible by the sheer fact that many wish to relinquish their animals (proven multiple times throughout the debate).

5. The Proposition makes another claim that exotic pets won't be abused in different settings because they're sold by breeders whose sole desire is to find a precious home for their lovely wild pet. ...Again, incorrect. Many are sold through the black market or online. [http://www.animallaw.info...]
It's nearly impossible to find statistics since it is the black market, after all.

6. The Opposition said in the assertion about wild animals being hurt that they have little use of their natural instincts. The Pro responds with a copy and paste from a website. If you actually read the quote, it really attacks the ownership of all animals, wild and domesticated. The Pro again tries to refute the point by comparing it to domesticated animals. Since domesticated animals are restricted, must wild animals be restricted? Again, let me make this clear. They are different beings. As your own quote says, it is necessary for domestic animals to be confined to houses most of the time as it is for their OWN safety. However, wild animals are even more instinctual; they're wild! They have never been domesticated and they need the wilderness to feel safe.
7. On the issue of finding the "right hands," the Pro responds by another comparison. Guns, domestics, cars, and alcohol are all things of our society, but not wild animals. These arguments do not directly answer those I have made. I would love to debate you about gun control (already a big issue in America), about domesticated animals, about Prohibition (which failed horribly), and even cars. We ban exotics because they're dangerous and unnecessary. Simple as that.

8. Pro claims that I stated that if exotic pets were allowed in the US, then illegal trade will become a problem. No where did I ever say it would become illegal; logically, if it was allowed, then it's totally legal. What I stated before was that the exotic pet market would be even bigger than it is now, and now it is huge. I cited the UAE as an example.

More on the Danger of Wild Animals

The Animal Protection Institute, an animal welfare group, catalogues attacks or escapes involving exotic pets. It details over 120 captive large cat incidents (attacks or escapes) since 1990, 75 nonhuman primate incidents since 1994, nearly 200 reptile incidents since 1995, and nearly 75 incidents involving other exotics such as bears, wolves, ferrets, and even a hippo, since 1995. All of these lists show drastic increases over the last several years, and API stresses that these are only partial accounts of the number of incidents. [http://www.animallaw.info...]

The Captive Wild Animal Protection Coalition releases a monthly report of incidents including human injuries and fatalities, animal injuries and fatalities, confiscations, and escapes. For April 2003, CWAPC reported 4 human fatalities, 93 animal fatalities (most from a single California faux-sanctuary), 17 confiscations, 4 escapes and one indictment of an individual for selling lion and tiger meat. [same source]

The Proposition has not been able to refute the vast amount of evidence, statistics, and research piled against him. He has only been able to make factless claims, hypothetical situations, and comparisons between wild animals and irrelevant issues that are being debated today.

There's a reason why these animals are banned or limited in most states. It's because lawmakers know their dangers and they and understand that the wild animals suffer, too.

Thank you.
I look forward to the response.

Debate Round No. 4
Splashstorm

Pro

I thank Con for his response.

Con states that "the only current regulations we have are virtually the bans." He also states that I claimed that with bans lifted, there would be less animal abuse.

Actually, permits do a great deal to secure animal and human safety. And bans are most definitely not the only regulations! I never said there would be less exotic animal abuse. I said that the amount of abuse would not suddenly grow just because now there are no bans. I compared this to how Wisconsin (which has no bans) does not have a larger amount of abuse than other states that do. And I said that regulations and tests could be useful-- this is what mostly defines a permit. To get a permit for many large mammals, for example, one must get one's facilities checked by the USDA.

"Domestic animals are abandoned by bad families sometimes. But when a dog is released into the street, it's not a big threat. When a tiger or a bear is released, it's much more of a problem."

Most people do not release their animals into the streets. Only a crazy person would release large exotics like elephants or tigers. This is extremely rare, and the person would be heftily fined. Con himself previously said that primates were given up to sanctuaries by their families, so this argument is a contradiction on his part.

Con stated that I said that permits were not working well. He then says that domestic and wild animals should not be compared because you do not need a permit for a domestic animal.

When did I ever say that permits did not work well? I advocated permits and dismissed bans. And yes, domestic pet owners do not need permits because their pets are "normal," despite having so many dog attacks and abandoned pets. Perhaps all animals should need some kind of permit. That would certainly help the animals in shelters.

"Pro has not proved that pet owners are responsible. I have proved they are irresponsible by the sheer fact that many wish to relinquish their animals (proven multiple times throughout the debate)."

The majority of exotic pet owners are very responsible. Most are not abusing their pets. This is absolutely false. Where is your proof? The media makes it seem like this is the case but it is not. This is just so far from the truth. So many exotic pets are living great lives, but the media will not have a very good story if they did a report on that. Just imagine: "Headline News: A beloved pet tiger passed away after living 20 good years with owner." Therefore, you don't hear much about them. Imagine if I were a newcomer to earth. I was flooded with stories about all the domestic animal abuse, and rarely heard about the good owners. I'd think most dog or cat owners were abusive, but that just is not the case, and it isn't the case with exotics. Yes, some exotics will be relinquished, but so can some domestics. There is no difference.

"If an animal is being fed, housed, and properly cared for, if the animal appears content in captivity, on what grounds do you have to assert that such an animal is suffering? Are you suggesting that due to its captivity the animal must be suffering even if it is not apparent? Then how will I know if my dog or cat is or isn’t suffering? It sounds a lot like the idea that the animal must be suffering is being derived from emotional non-logic.

As for the obvious cases of abuse that have infrequently occurred, there's enough domesticated pet cruelty to keep multiple
Animal Planet series running, while Fatal Attractions struggles to search for more stories after 2 seasons. It is incredibly unreasonable to hold exotic pet owners to a higher standard than domesticated animal owners and expect there to be zero rates of cruel situations. As for the idea that just because an animal is wild or undomesticated that it cannot be cared for in captivity, that statement comes without a shred of actual evidence and is based on personal sentiment (often by people who are uneducated about captive animal care, and also refuse to do so)." [1]

"The Opposition said in the assertion about wild animals being hurt that they have little use of their natural instincts. The Pro responds with a copy and paste from a website. If you actually read the quote, it really attacks the ownership of all animals, wild and domesticated. The Pro again tries to refute the point by comparing it to domesticated animals. Since domesticated animals are restricted, must wild animals be restricted? Again, let me make this clear. They are different beings. As your own quote says, it is necessary for domestic animals to be confined to houses most of the time as it is for their OWN safety. However, wild animals are even more instinctual; they're wild! They have never been domesticated and they need the wilderness to feel safe."

No, domesticated animals and wild animals are not that different. Domesticated animals still have nearly all of their basic instincts. If you allow a dog, horse, cat, or bird to become feral, you will see that they will very quickly adapt. What does this say about them? It shows how wild they still all are at heart. There have been stories of dog packs in the country that attack children. These are dogs that, when they go back to their families, would never hurt a fly. This shows just how strong the pack instinct and prey drive still is in them. So, wild or domesticated, they are very nearly the same. A person who is educated on their specific wild animal would have no problems when keeping it as a pet. And the assumption that wild animals are or feel safe in the wild is ridiculous. Only in captivity can many animals who are usually skittish finally let down their guard.

"Pro claims that I stated that if exotic pets were allowed in the US, then illegal trade will become a problem. No where did I ever say it would become illegal; logically, if it was allowed, then it's totally legal. What I stated before was that the exotic pet market would be even bigger than it is now, and now it is huge. I cited the UAE as an example."

Sorry, I misunderstood. Very well, then the exotic pet market would be bigger than it is now, but what is the problem with that? Most exotics would not be coming from the wild, as I've already stated before. They would ensure endangered species will not go extinct, and like I stated before, illegal poaching would be greatly decreased, because why buy animals from an overly expensive ILLEGAL source when you can buy from a good breeder legally for a much more acceptable price?

Con has given me copy and pasted information about why exotics are so dangerous. In fact, I think my statistics greatly refute all that. The media and AR groups overexaggerate the dangers of exotics. This is proven when you take a "highly dangerous" animal like a tiger and look more closely at their attacks, like I did. Like I showed in my statistics, tigers are really not dangerous at all, in the right hands. Especially since getting in your car poses 3 times the threat of actually owning a tiger. If animal attacks were really so frequent, why is it that Fatal Attractions struggle to find more stories after just season 2, like my quote above stated? Exotic pets are not dangerous. And even if they were, why would it concern others? Most animal attacks are not on the public. If someone wanted to put themselves at risk, who are you to stop them? This goes for extreme sports. Why aren't they banned? They are a whole lot more dangerous than exotic animals, and they are not a necessity.

Animals are banned or limited in most places because people assume that animals are dangerous. Almost everyone will automatically think: "You have a panther? It's gonna eat you!" This is why most lawmakers deem them dangerous. But if they really were so dangerous, why haven't they been completely banned? Why are some places still holding on? There's a reason for that as well.

Thank you.

[1] http://melissaasmith.hubpages.com...
XStrikeX

Con

Thanks for sticking through all the way to the end, Splashstorm.
I appreciate your passion about this topic.

Refutations

1. The issue of permits


Con states that permits are extremely effective and that we should keep the permits and remove the bans. However, this cannot work for every state, for in some, there only exist the bans. In other states, there already are no bans, just permits. So the Con is advocating a system in which most of the states already function in today.

Furthermore, will these permits find the right owners? Previously, the Proposition offered suggestions as to how to find the correct owners. If the Pro had to do this, then the permits are not working. Now, the Pro is stating that the permits are nearly perfect and they work.


Con stated previously that Wisconsin, which has neither a ban nor a permit, does not have a larger amount of animal abuse than other states. This claim was not backed by evidence or sources. However, if Wisconsin, one of the few states that does not require a license, permit, or has a ban, does not have a higher amount of abuse, then essentially, we don't even need any piece of legislation AT ALL. This is the contradiction I pointed out last round. Con advocates permits but says that Wisconsin does not have a larger amount of abuse. It also does not have permits.

So, in conclusion, either the permits DON'T work or the Con is making up evidence. And you can't have a ban AND a permit, just a piece of legislation that requires a permit or just a ban.

2. The issue of responsible owners

Pro refuses to offer any actual evidence for many of his points, including this one. He claims that the majority of exotic pet owners are responsible. No evidence. No statistics.

Pro believes the media makes wild animals look bad. Well, that's because they are. And it's not like the media is a "bad thing." Sure, the media might not report on the few good owners, but that doesn't mean everyone IS good. I've offered plenty of statistics about released animals, animal incidents, etc. The Pro has offered nothing to prove his claim that there are responsible owners. He even dropped his ideas of "testing" for responsible owners.

3. The issue of suffering animals

The Pro responds to my argument by copying and pasting a paragraph from some blog-like page. "If an animal is being fed, housed, and properly cared for, if the animal appears content in captivity, on what grounds do you have to assert that such an animal is suffering?"


That's a ton of 'if's.' If fed? If housed? If properly cared for? If appears content? I assert that an animal is suffering because those 'if's' are not always fulfilled.

He continues to copy and paste the paragraphs.
Instead of actually formulating an argument, I suppose copying and pasting works, too.
It is not "incredibly unreasonable" to hold exotic pet owners to a higher standard than domestics. We don't expect there to be zero rates of cruel situation, but a lot fewer than the modern rates.

4. The issue of domestic vs. wild animals

The Pro seemingly can't stop comparing wild animals to domestic animals. I stated that wild animals cannot use their natural instincts in captivity. He compared it to domesticated animals again, which I see no relevance in at all. I stated that they are two different beings and the comparisons cannot be used, but he says they're not that different because domesticated animals, when put back into the wild, can quickly adapt. Incorrect.

Dogs, birds, rabbits, most farm animals, and tropical fish cannot survive in the wild (when domesticated). Only cats can. http://thepetwiki.com...

The comparison is irrelevant. Extend the Opposition's point.

5. The issue of the exotic pet market

Pro says there is not a problem with the exotic pet market becoming bigger. As I stated before, most exotic pet purchases occur through the black market (http://www.animallaw.info...).
So the black market is getting bigger and more illegal purchases will be occurring. People buy on the black market because the prices are cheaper. So you a bigger exotic pet trade in a black market that is illegal. This is bad.
Also, as I stated before, as the exotic pet trade got bigger in the UAE, people desired exotic pets less and less for compassion, but for a sign of wealth or courage.

6. Refuting the affirmative closing statement

Pro believes his statistics refute all of mine. Please remember that my statistics are taken from various animals rights groups or more formal sources like National Geographic. His statistics come from himself. His evidence comes from blogs. His arguments come from unreputable webpages. His evidence is not reputable, and I believe my cited evidence is stronger than his own statistics.

Tigers aren't dangerous at all, I agree... If put in the right hands and provided every bit of care. And the Pro has backed off of his own ideas of finding the right owners. By relinquishing his proposed plans, then wild animals will be put in the wrong hands. In the wrong hands, wild animals can be dangerous. When dangerous, people can die through disease or an attack. The animal will suffer as well. I do not care if a car or a motorcycle poses a threat. They are necessary, and it's entirely irrelevant to debate on the usage of vehicles when this debate is about wild animals. It's a flawed comparison.

He makes ANOTHER comparison to extreme sports. Why aren't they banned? I don't know, but it doesn't matter because it's ANOTHER flawed comparison. There HAS been discussion concerning the banning of extreme sports. Save it for another debate elsewhere. The comparison is entirely irrelevant and does not work.

7. Why aren't wild animals banned everywhere?

This is strange. The Pro has added a point in the final round of the debate.
Anyway, the reason why they aren't entirely banned is because some lawmakers view the situation differently. Some believe we should have the freedom to have wild animals. Some are misinformed about wild animals. Some may even HAVE wild animals. It's just up to the state legislature. In some states, especially rural areas, the wild animal is necessary like wild turkey, for example. This is the reason why they are not banned everywhere, but realize that they are banned mostly everywhere. A few states require permits. Very few have no law regarding wild animals at all.

Summing up the Debate

The Proposition has made multiple, uncited, major claims throughout this debate. He brings in little evidence, but constantly reverts back to the statistics that he made.
I have shown instances of wild animal attacks, statistics concerning animal incidents, facts and figures about disease, evidence of the wild animal itself being hurt. If you compare the vast amounts of proof, it completely favors the Opposition.
The Pro does little to directly refute the accidents, but does three things.

1) Compares to domesticated animals
2) The right owners will be found through permits, so nothing bad will happen
3) Ignores it and makes more claims

1 and 3 have already been refuted. 1 is irrelevant. 3 is not factual.
It is #2 that is the main core of the Proposition case. He has never proved how the right owners will be found. He has offered his ideas on the matter, but I have shot down all his proposals, all of which he drops. He then turns to permits. If permits were working, then there would be fewer incidents. If they were working, the Pro wouldn't even have had to make up ideas on how to find the right owners. The right owners will not be found. They are not the right owners if they are buying through the black market.

Without the right owners, the black market will flourish.
Without the right owners, people will be hurt by dangerous wild animals.
Without the right owners, people will get diseases from wild animals.
Without the right owners, the wild animals will suffer tremendously.

Without the right owners, the possession of wild animals cannot be allowed.
Thank you.

Debate Round No. 5
15 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by Glax 4 years ago
Glax
Its you're house and you're property so you should be able to have whatever you like in it. Animals are all alike in having instincts that they listen to, so why would one animal be more likely to attack then another? Just because an animal is considered "wild" doesn't mean it's more dangerous.
Posted by retroman000 4 years ago
retroman000
Personally, I believe that the proposition had the more sound argument. It was, however, a very close (and good), debate. I would vote, but I am new to the site, and have not yet met the requirements to be able to vote.
Posted by gsmith9072 4 years ago
gsmith9072
Both debators did not use peer-reviewed sources, which would have been very helpful. Con is right, you cannot prove that most exotic animal owners are responsible, but it also hasn't been disproven. Different species of animals vary tremendously from one another. It would be helpful to discuss one group of animals, and not diverge the debate to other subjects (exotic pets can't be cared for properly, ect.). According to this debate, con is against zoos and reptile keeping. Con does not feel a gecko can be cared for properly. That seems to contradict that other pets will be left alone. Whether or not what group of animals can be cared for properly has been reduced to personal opinion here with no animal behavior studies to cite except one vets opinion on monkeys. That is not suitable criteria to support that bans are necessary.
Posted by gsmith9072 4 years ago
gsmith9072
So I've finished reading both arguments, but apparently I'm not allowed to vote because my phone does not receive text messaging.

I feel obligated to share a few facts with both participants. I feel as though this debate was invalidated by lack of discussion of what exactly constitutes an 'exotic pet' and what the criteria of the permits that were discussed consists of. States, cities, towns, neighborhoods all have unique legislation.

I don't think pro proved his claim about the majority of exotic animal owners being 'responsible'.

Con made several unproven claims: "Wild animal attacks are more severe and mostly fatal" (which wild animals?) "If anything, the media has failed to cover many major attacks on TV." ". Diseases include rabies, distemper, herpes viruses, salmonella, polio, tuberculosis, Rocky Mountain spotted fever and bubonic plague" (please cite single incidences of exotic pets spreading rabies, distemper, polio, RMSF, and the bubonic plague, as I can with domestics).

"Dogs, birds, rabbits, most farm animals, and tropical fish cannot survive in the wild (when domesticated). Only cats can." --this is incorrect and is verified by a non-credible source. There is too much misinformation in this debate on facts about animals.

Con made several numerous claims about all exotic animals that are simply untrue and exceed my commenting space.

Con also stated that dog incidences are mostly bites, and then lists several exotic animal bites, including one example with a pet lynx where the child sustained no visible damage. The incidences used as 'proof' just proof there are incidences, but not higher or similar rates to domestics.

"Petting zoos, where children are allowed to approach and feed captive wildlife and domestic animals, have been linked to several zoonotic outbreaks."---petting zoos mostly have domesticated animals. All mammals spread disease including domestics: http://oregonvma.org...
Posted by gsmith9072 4 years ago
gsmith9072
I'm just stating my reason for my vote. I'd love to debate someone on this subject, if a repeat is allowed.
Posted by XStrikeX 4 years ago
XStrikeX
I would not particularly enjoy debating THREE people in the comments section, rather than one person in the actual debate rounds. Thank you. ^-^
Posted by gsmith9072 4 years ago
gsmith9072
I'm going to note that the con made several factual errors as rebuttals in this debate which is invalidating their arguments. I will list them all when I finish reading everything.
Posted by gsmith9072 4 years ago
gsmith9072
Sorry, I didn't mean to potentially create a biased slant. I would love to vote on this debate but I'll need more time to read all of these arguments. Obviously I have my own opinion on this subject, but I'm not sure who did better in the debate, argument-wise. I'll see if I can get around to reading and voting. I think both participants did a great job from what I briefed. I'd also love to take a stab at it, lol. It is an emotional subject for people like me, as you are discussing banning a huge chunk of our lives. Thank you con for taking an interest in this subject. It doesn't look like there's much interest from other people.
Posted by EricRoscoe 4 years ago
EricRoscoe
Keep fighting the good fight Splashstorm, a

According to an economic summary of the reptile industry by the United States Association of Reptile Keepers submitted to the Office of Management and Budget regarding the USFWS proposed rule change to add 9 species of constrictor snake to the Injurious Wildlife Listing of the Lacey Act, there are approximately "2 million breeding age animals valued at $800,000,000:
http://usark.org...

According to HSUS' own statistics, there have been "13 people have been killed in the U.S. by pet pythons -- which are also constrictors -- since 1980."
http://www.foxnews.com...

13 fatalities/30 years= An average of 0.43 deaths per year.

There are roughly 70 million dogs kept in the United States, and an average of ~35 dog related fatalities EVERY year.

Dogs- 35/70 Million x 100 =0.00005%
Constrictors- 0.4/2 Million x 100= 0.00002%

So, even while it may be true there are far more dogs kept in captivity than large snakes, one is, based on these percentages of verified statistics, still over twice as likely to be fatally injured by a dog than by a large snake...
Posted by XStrikeX 4 years ago
XStrikeX
I was unaware that the debate could continue in the comments.
3 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Vote Placed by Topiarey 4 years ago
Topiarey
SplashstormXStrikeXTied
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Total points awarded:05 
Reasons for voting decision: Pro dropped much of his case along the way in the face of Con's staggering rebuttals. Arguments to con for this reason. Sources to con as well.
Vote Placed by Jarhyn 4 years ago
Jarhyn
SplashstormXStrikeXTied
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Total points awarded:60 
Reasons for voting decision: PRO wins arguments as he makes a valid inference, and CON continually attempts to refute it with invalid statistics. This is rightly a discussion of the danger of exotic pets, and PRO established that they are less dangerous. Further, PRO argued the very convincing argument that a domestic life is a preferable scenario to a hard, painful life of suffering against starvation and possible extinction. CON's entire case is generally one of sensationalism of case studies. CON's use of such misleading arguments means conduct rightly goes to PRO.
Vote Placed by whyt3nn3rdy 4 years ago
whyt3nn3rdy
SplashstormXStrikeXTied
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Total points awarded:05 
Reasons for voting decision: Many Drops by Pro, along with Con's very detailed rebuttals earned Con arguments. Sources to Con as well for the win in general.