With the number of exotic pet owners increasing in Qatar, several residents have taken to social media to criticize those responsible for keeping wild animals as pets as well as those letting them inside the country.
A recent Facebook post by Qatar’s Ministry of Interior sparked the debate. The post warned the “offenders” and advised against keeping wild animals at home. However, it did not mention what the consequences will be for those continuing to raise these wild animals at home.
This hobby is not just unique to Qatar, but is also a flourishing trade in Saudi Arabia and United Arab Emirates. Plenty of photos and videos have been circulating on the Internet and shared on social media.
Several Qatar residents were extremely critical of this particular hobby. Here’s what some of them said on the post:
Karys Kruger: “Being from a country that protects the environment and wildlife intensely (to the point where they’ve denied oil drilling rights for the sake of the environment) it shocks me that this isn’t under better control in Qatar, and that this even slips passed in the first place.”
Trish Slade: “It doesn’t matter how well they are taken care of. Wild animals belong in the wild. They do not belong to us. They are not ours to take.”
Claire Morrice: “Ban the right to import and own and confiscate all existing in Qatar! I have seen a monkey and a cheetah in public places, it’s a danger to society, act now please before someone is killed. It’s not fair on the wild animal also.”
Richard Hornby: “If Gordon Ramsay can’t get a gift of a bottle of expensive champagne into the country I am pretty sure that any future import of such animals could be prevented very easily.”
Paula Elizabeth Jensch: “Wild animals are not meant to be pets! People keeping wild animals should be penalised and the animals must be released to nature reserves and not zoos!”
Wilson Correa: “Keep the people in zoo who raise wild animals at home.”
Despite all the international pressure and calls to crackdown on this dangerous trend, Qatar government has not been actively dealing with this issue.
Maybe the owners only thought of these wild animals as an accessory for their supercars or they probably are truly fond of these rare endangered species. This hobby, however, should not be a threat to the public. They are wild after all.
What do you think is the best way Qatar government can deal with this dangerous hobby?