Animals of Montana’s Bid to Breed Captive Wildlife Under Fire From PETA

Deaths of Animals, Employee Cited in Appeal to Authorities to Block Breeding Permit

For Immediate Release:
December 9, 2014

David Perle 202-483-7382

Bozeman, Mont. – PETA has submitted formal comments calling on the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service to shoot down an application from Animals of Montana for a captive bred wildlife permit. As PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to use for entertainment”—points out, owner Troy Hyde has a history of violating wildlife, animal welfare, and worker-safety laws and deceiving officials. Several animals in his care have also died prematurely, and an employee was fatally mauled by a bear.

“Animals of Montana has had more than enough chances to show its true colors where animals are concerned, and the results were injury and death across the board,” says PETA Foundation Deputy General Counsel Delcianna Winders. “PETA is asking the authorities to put the safety of animals and members of the public first by tossing this application now.”

Animals of Montana’s application also fails to acknowledge that Hyde was previously convicted of illegally trafficking tigers in violation of the Endangered Species Act and the Lacey Act, after which his U.S. Department of Agriculture exhibitor’s license was suspended for two years. According to news reports, Animals of Montana has also allowed many animals to escape, putting both the animals and the public at risk. In 2012, employee Benjamin Cloutier was fatally attacked by a grizzly bear while cleaning the animal’s enclosure. The bear was shot at the scene, and Cloutier’s death was later recognized as preventable by the U.S. Occupational Safety & Health Administration.

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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind