PETA Statement: Gulf Breeze Zoo Faces Federal Complaint for Alleged Animal-Welfare Violations

For Immediate Release:
June 22, 2015

David Perle 202-483-7382

PETA Foundation Deputy Director of Captive Animal Law Enforcement Brittany Peet has released a statement in response to the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s complaint against Gulf Breeze Zoo and its owners, Eric and Meghan Mogensen:

It should come as no surprise that the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) needed 18 pages to document the abuses perpetuated at all three roadside zoos operated by Eric Mogensen and his daughter Meghan—who’s already racked up a conviction for cruelty to animals for drowning a wallaby named Parmesan in a bucket of water and then dumping his body in the trash. Meghan and her father then falsified a report claiming that they had humanely euthanized him, as part of a pattern of cruelty and deceit that they’ve only continued at Gulf Breeze Zoo, where Meghan Mogensen is now an employee. The USDA found that animals in need of humane euthanasia were killed primarily with a gunshot, while tigers were confined to a building with a strong, musty odor and newborn rabbits were eaten or injured when housed with incompatible adults. A child was also bitten by a camel when zoo staff failed to monitor public contact. The way to protect animals from roadside zoos is clear—steer families elsewhere.

PETA’s motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to use for entertainment.” More information about our campaign is available at

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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