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Exotic animal bylaw exemption returns to council agenda

Photo from Marc Cunningham’s website.

UPDATE: Approved, with Shire Hall getting two weeks notice of party dates locations and what animals/reptiles are attending.

Creatures may crawl, slither and fly in Prince Edward County for entertainment and educational purposes this summer if council approves exemptions to its exotic animal bylaw tonight at Shire Hall.

Marc Cunningham, owner of Wild Zoo Parties, made a deputation to a March Committee of the Whole meeting to permit shows in the County. Council, in May, recommended approval be given subject to Cunningham providing confirmation of compliance with regulatory bodies.

He has since provided related information noting no charges for non-compliance with the Ontario Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and states the company folows recommendations from the Canadian Food Inspection Agency and Health Canada. He also provided confirmation the company carries a $5 million commercial and general liability policy.

He is scheduled to address council regarding his request. The Belleville-based company’s shows, he said, typically include tarantulas, small and large lizards and snakes, tortoises, amphibians, small exotic mammals and parrots.

He told council in March he has been performing educational shows for more than 10 years professionally, without incident and has received exemptions to bylaws in several municipalities including Hamilton and Mississauga based on the premise he provides safe, educational shows for schools, libraries, fairs, festivals and birthday parties

Annette McIntosh and Angela Lammes are also on tonight’s agenda to provide deputations. The two have long requested that council refuse any exemptions to the bylaw, to any person or organization.

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  1. Marnie says:

    I am not convinced that they have seen the light Chuck. I do not support circuses with elephants, tigers and dancing bears or events such as the chuck wagon races at the Calgary Stampede. However, the proposed Wild Zoo Party does not raise any red flags. As far as the rodeo goes, if those bucking broncs did not have a job in it they would have been on a meat truck long ago. They are not suitable as saddle horses. I think council can be trusted to make an informed decision about the Zoo party.

  2. Chuck says:

    Perhaps their experiences have lead to a different point of view as to how animals should be treated. They make a strong argument. What’s your position?

  3. Marnie says:

    Weird that the two local animal activists so opposed to this and last year’s rodeo used to be big fans of harness racing. They saw nothing wrong in racing horses in very hot weather. What horse would naturally choose to go around and around a track pulling a cart as fast as it could? And don’t forget the whips that the drivers used to encourage their best efforts. Pot calling the kettle black.

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