A ministerial decree in Cyprus obliges all exotic pet owners to declare what animals they hold for the benefit of the public which may be vulnerable to animal-to-human diseases.
Yet, only about 5% of such pet owners have done so, according to Agriculture Ministry insiders who said the deadline for such declaration expired on September 5, 2021.
The list of exotic pets is crystal clear but it has become obvious that there are practical difficulties when t cones to inspection, one also told Philenews.
For one thing, customs officers at the Republic’s entry points find it hard to be fully certain that the animal presented to them is the same as the one declared in the documents.
A recent example is the document presented to them referring to a cat, which is a permitted species but not to a wildcat which was the case. Wild cats are prohibited species in Cyprus.
The issue came to the fore after a wild cat last week attacked a child who had to be hospitalised.