When we think of pets, dogs and cats usually come to mind first. If these animals can no longer be cared for by their owners, are abandoned, found roaming neighbourhoods, or are apprehended by authorities because of neglect or cruelty, they can be brought to the local S.P.C.A. to be cared for. When animals are considered healthy, they are then available for adoption as the goal is to find individuals who can provide a safe and loving home to them.
So what happens when snakes, lizards, and turtles can no longer be cared for or are seized because of inadequate care? Well, on Vancouver Island … there really wasn’t anything … officially. At least that’s how it was until 2008, when Natalie Ramsay and Dawn Robertson established the North Island Reptile Rescue Society. Their goals are to provide a center for rescue and rehabilitation as well as educate the public about reptile and amphibian pets. If restricted animals (B.C. has laws about what types of reptiles and amphibians can be purchased here) end up in their care, they transfer them to appropriate facilities that can take care of them.
We learned a great deal from their presentation. So much in fact, that a new pet found its way into the Braidwood household. A ball python! Maybe if my class is nice to me, I’ll bring Yatsu into class to visit.
image: Zorro, my ball python by char1iej released under a CC Attribution – Noncommercial – No Derivatives Works