Los Angeles City Council Votes To Ban The Use Of Exotic Animals For Entertainment At Private Events & Parties


Yesterday, the Los Angeles City Council approved an ordinance led by Councilmember David Ryu to ban the exhibition of wild and exotic animals for entertainment purposes. The ordinance, which began as a motion in 2016, makes it illegal to bring wild animals to parties or use them for entertainment purposes.

Councilmember Ryu called the law “long overdue.” This important bill is now headed to the desk of Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garretti for his signature.

“The issue of wild, exotic, and even dangerous animals being used for entertainment came to our doorstep four years ago, when a baby giraffe and elephant were being marched up the Hollywood Hills for a house party,” Councilmember Ryu said in a statement. “Whether in Council District Four or across our City, we have heard reports of majestic, wild animals being carted around for amusement at a house party. It is time that the City of Los Angeles makes absolutely clear that this abuse of wild animals is shameful, and we will not stand for it.”

Wild animals have been banned from circuses in the State of California since last year. The new city law extends that ban to house parties and private entertainment, and includes a ban on any exhibition in which “Wild, Exotic, or Dangerous Animals are required to perform tricks, give rides, or participate as accompaniment for entertainment purposes.”

“Allowing direct contact with dangerous wild animals is inhumane for the animals and unsafe for the public,” wrote Catherine Doyle, Director of Science, Research and Advocacy at PAWS, in a letter to the City Council. “Most people do not know that wild animals used for public interactions have been taken from their mothers shortly after birth so they can be hand-raised and controlled.”

As noted by Animal Defenders International, a federal bill to end the use of wild animals in traveling shows called the Traveling Exotic Animal and Public Safety Protection Act (TEAPSPA), is gaining bipartisan support in the House and Senate. Across the United States, 96 jurisdictions in 32 states have taken action to restrict such acts to date, with New Jersey, Hawaii, and California passing statewide measures.

More information on TEAPSA and ways to support this important federal bill are available HERE!

If you live in Los Angeles, please call Mayor Eric Garcetti at (213) 978-1028 or email mayor.helpdesk@lacity.org and urge him to sign the City Council-approved legislation to ban the exhibition of wild and exotic animals for so-called private “entertainment.” 

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