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Why are Ferrets illegal in California?

by Hari M


Why are ferrets illegal in California?

In 1933, importation and possession of domestic ferrets, as well as wild animals, was restricted in California. The California Department of Fish and Game, on March 25th 1994, expressed its views regarding the ferrets as:

1. Ferrets may bite or scratch children, as well as adults.

2. Ferrets also carry rabies, and there is no proper vaccine against the rabies which attacks it.

3. Ferrets can also threaten native wildlife.

Though by mistake it was accepted by law to avoid rearing ferrets, California has continued to follow that law. The two states, California and Hawaii, have retained the ban on ferrets, while all other states have lifted that law, and consider ferrets as domestic animals. The struggle to legalize ferrets in California has been continuing for 15 years.

By following this law, the California Department of Fish and Game gets lot of money from Sierra Club, Audubon, and other organizations. They keep pumping money as long as the California Department of Fish and Game keeps the possession of ferrets illegal in California.

Ferrets are considered to be illegal as they may breed in the wild, and pose a threat to agriculture and native species. Ferrets are also believed to be roaming and killing more chicken than that are necessary for its consumption. It is also believed that ferrets are a threat to birds, amphibians and reptiles. Wildlife that are considered to be at risk of extinction due to ferrets are burrowing owls, California ground squirrels and mountain beavers.

Ferrets have a history of biting infants, and hence they are considered to be a threat to public safety and health. Ferrets are not wild animals, but they are treated as threat to other wildlife in California. In other states like South Carolina, though it is legal to own ferrets, it is illegal to sell them. Ferrets are ticketed in Minneapolis and New York, though they are not considered illegal over there.

The ban on wildlife possession has gradually strengthened with the ferrets as well, and it continues in California.

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