City centre protest against keeping reptiles as pets

Reporter:

Robert Platt

A HUMAN dressed as a chameleon will be crammed into a small cage at an event in Chester to protest against keeping reptiles as pets.

The demonstration will take place on Foregate Street at noon on Wednesday  as part of a national campaign by retailer Lush Cosmetics.

Employees at the store will be holding posters that read “Exotic animals are not pets!” and handing out leaflets to passers-by.

Campaign manager Leonie Davies said: “The trade in reptiles is clearly out of control and countless animals are living short, miserable lives as a result.

“We hope that by raising the profile of this important issue through our network of stores we can lessen the demand for reptiles as pets.”

She added that 90 per cent of wild-caught reptiles do not survive their first year in captivity.

Elain Toland, from the Animal Protection Agency (APA), added: “Life for many captive reptiles is unimaginable.

“In terms of their need for sufficient space and a varied diet it is akin to spending the rest of your life in a toilet cubicle and having the same meal, every mealtime, pushed under the door.

“Given the complex biological needs of these animals, life for the average pet reptile is most probably far worse than this.”

The colourful protest is part of a week-long campaign to convince the public that reptiles are wild animals and should never be kept as pets.

All proceeds raised at the event will go to the APA.

See full story in the Chester Leader

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