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Ohio governor calls for stricter enforcement of exotic animal laws

Following the Zanesville wild animal catastrophe, Ohio Governor John Kasich signed an executive order that will allow state agencies and local officials to better enforce legislation related to exotic pet ownership, sales and transfers.

A few weeks age, Terry Thompson set 56 wild animals free - including lions, bears and monkeys - before taking his own life, and emergency responders were forced to put down 49 of the creatures out of fear for public safety. Attempts were made to save animals, but the timing of the events made it difficult and even dangerous for authorities to attempt to tranquilize the beasts.

Jack Hanna, an animal expert and TV personality, told 10TV News that tranquilizing an animal takes careful planning and requires many details, including the animals' weights and the specific area in which they are shot with tranquilizers must be taken into consideration.

The New York Times reports that Ohio legislation already allows state animal humane officers to place people under arrest if they are found guilty of animal cruelty. In the aftermath of this tragic situation, Governor Kasich has also promised to form a state task force, which will be responsible for designing a new law regarding the ownership of exotic pets.
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