Feds Cite Roadside Zoo for Endangering Newborn Cougar Cub

PETA Complaint Spurs Investigation Into Space Farms Zoo's Exploitation of Baby Animal

For Immediate Release:
December 16, 2019

David Perle 202-483-7382

Sussex, N.J. – After PETA urged the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to investigate the notorious Space Farms Zoo & Museum for allegedly transporting an infant cougar cub named Juniper—who had been prematurely separated from her mother—in a cardboard box in the front seat of a car, the agency cited the roadside zoo for endangering the animal.

According to the inspection report, the facility was cited for bringing Juniper to a public event when she was just 5 days old and for exposing her to the public three more times before she was even 2 weeks old. USDA policy acknowledges that nondomesticated neonatal cubs (baby animals 4 weeks of age or younger) are not able to regulate their body temperatures and have underdeveloped immune systems, putting them at risk for disease and infection.

“Space Farms Zoo callously put this vulnerable newborn cub, who should have been with her mother, in stressful, potentially harmful situations,” says PETA Foundation Supervising Veterinarian Dr. Heather Rally. “PETA is asking decent people to avoid this and every other enterprise that puts baby animals’ lives at risk to make a buck.”

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to use for entertainment”—notes that Space Farms Zoo has a long history of violating the federal Animal Welfare Act. The facility has been cited for failing to provide a visibly thin goat with veterinary care; failing to clean water receptacles and pools, some of which were moldy; failing to have an enrichment plan for primates; and allowing enclosures to become filthy and contain dangerously jagged and rusty materials.

PETA opposes speciesism, the human-supremacist worldview that other animals are nothing more than commodities. For more information, please visit PETA.org.

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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