No funky pets at Morton

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No funky pets at Morton

Dogs are the most common pets Morton students own.

Dogs are the most common pets Morton students own.

Dogs are the most common pets Morton students own.

Dogs are the most common pets Morton students own.

Esmeralda Villa, Alma Castillo, and Brianna Ballesteros

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An estimated half of the Morton East student population own normal pets such as dogs and cats, but none own exotic pets.  

An exotic pet is a rare or unusual animal pet: an animal kept within human households which is rather unusual to keep or is generally thought of as a wild species rather than as a pet. There are millions of wild animals kept as pets in homes across the U.S. These animals face lives of unnatural captivity, which often includes inadequate care, food, and living conditions. The sale and possession of exotic animals are regulated by a patchwork of federal, state and local laws that generally vary by community and by the animal. Eighteen states prohibit possession of at least large cats, wolves, bears, nonhuman primates, and dangerous reptiles. Ten states have a partial ban, prohibiting the possession of some exotic animals. Thirteen states require a license or permit to possess exotic animals. Many cities and counties have adopted ordinances that are more stringent than state law. In a random survey of 100 Morton East students, 50 students reported that they have pets. The other 50 students do not have any pets. Out of 100 students, none had any unusual pets.  

The most common unusual animal students may have is in the reptile area.  

“Throughout my life, I’ve only had a dog and recently I’ve been taking care of my bearded dragon, I would say it is kind of weird because not everyone has one, plus you have to feed it crickets,” said senior Victor Alfonso.  

However, some students do have the desire of owning an actual exotic pet.  

“I would want to have a wolf, they remind me a lot of huskies since they’re so cute and playful,” said sophomore Sofia Lerma.  

“Little tiger cubs are pretty cool, like big kitties and once they grow up, you got yourself a personal bodyguard,” said senior Kevin Jimenez.  

In addition to that, others think that keeping wild animals would protect them.  

“Monkeys are great, I feel like if monkeys are being extinct, why let them die in the wild alone. While they could be safe in a loving home just like any domesticated pet,” said senior Shannon Smith.  

While others think the whole opposite regarding the issue of extinction.  

“Many species are facing extinction due to the exotic animal pet trade. In some countries/areas, it is illegal but in other countries, it is perfectly legal to own, sell and buy exotic animals. This is in addition to threats already facing many species such as habitat destruction and climate change. People have to understand that often to capture the exotic species, other species are killed, habitat is destroyed and family members of that species are often killed to acquire the young and sometimes the animal dies during transport from one area to another from dehydration, starvation, disease, stress, and improper care. Many people who own exotics do not know how to properly care for them or do not realize how much work they take or what an expense they are. By owning a pet from the exotic pet trade, you are contributing to the extinction of that species,” said earth science teacher Ms. Berezniak 

Some students just don’t have luck with their pets.

“I had a goldfish once, but it died on Thanksgiving,” senior Temiria Allen.