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When most people consider adopting a new pet, they typically choose a dog or cat, but there is one couple in Russia who decided to bring a young male puma into their home and keep him like a pet.

The puma named Messi is gaining some Internet fame around social media, and it is easy to see why. Messi is 30 percent smaller than the typical male puma and lives in the couple’s home alongside their Sphynx cat. He has an enrichment play area, takes baths in the tub, is fed hearty meals of raw meat, is leash-trained, and goes on nature adventures to the river and beach.

The couple has even enrolled Messi in obedience training classes where the big cat appears undisturbed alongside the dogs at the training school.

 

Although Messi appears remarkably tame, well-trained (although the methods that were used to do so are unknown and could have been harmful to the animal), and is given much love and attention, keeping a wild animal poses serious dangerous threats. Wild animals cannot be domesticated within their lifetime, and despite intensive training and adapting to a domestic life, their natural wild tendencies can still emerge, often without warning, and typically beginning at sexual maturity. Messi is two-years-old, and male pumas reach sexual maturity around three years old. We hope Messi’s guardians consider sending him to a reputable sanctuary where he can develop and live like an adult puma without posing risk to people or other animals.

Messi may seem like a unique story, but unfortunately, the issue of keeping big cats as “pets” has become somewhat of an epidemic around the world. It is such a serious issue that there are more tigers in backyards today than there are in the wild. After big cats become too much for people to handle, they are often killed or abandoned and left to starve to death. The idea of keeping wild animals as pets also fuels the wildlife trade which is corrupt with both animal and human rights violations. Realizing the severity of the issue, the United Arab Emirates has banned the ownership of big cats, and we hope the rest of the world follows suit.

Although it is apparent Messi’s guardians truly love him and are trying their best to provide him with an enriching and comfortable life, the young puma belongs on a sanctuary where he can roam freely in the outdoors like a wild animal should without posing risks to those around him. Further, this sort of video and social promotion only perpetuates the illegal wildlife trade and spread the false idea that you can domesticate wild animals, which is dangerous to people and animals alike. No matter how much you think you can provide for an exotic animal, the bottom line is they belong in the wild!

Many people are not aware of the dangers involving keeping wild animals as pets, so please make sure to share this with your network!

Lead Image Source: Youtube

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40 comments on “Pet Puma Who Is Trained Like a Dog Is Making Waves on Social Media — Why This Is More Dangerous Than Cute”

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Oriana Scapeccia
8 Days ago

respect their nature if you love them, let them in their natural habitat!


Reply
Fabienne Dupont
10 Days ago

Not cool!!!!


Reply
Izabel Peixoto
14 Jan 2018

I dislike very much when people claim to love animals and do stuff like this. This so should be against the law.

Cj Michaud
10 Days ago

People are amazingly idiotic in their need to attain and control. We continue to ruin what is good and free.


Reply
Aubrey Scheel
10 Days ago

There are obviously significant issues on both sides of keeping wild animals as pets. My biggest problem is the cougar is shown walking on a retractable leash! - These are a bad choice for dogs, let alone a predatory big cat.


Reply
Deanna Johnson
10 Days ago

Zoos and "sanctuaries" are the only place that we can see any "wild" animal at the rate of things poor fella but at least he's alive..?


Reply
Sylvain Cote
10 Days ago

not so sure it's a good thing once domesticated too late but should have been left in the wild where they belong c'mon so few left....just leave them alone


Reply
Frank Stone
13 Jan 2018

well that cat cannot live in the wild, he's smaller n sick. he would die otherwise.

Sylvain Cote
13 Jan 2018

still they say alberta is giving like 10% of the population of cougars up for grab...thats too much i had the chance to see two of em and they deserve to live man...they are so rare around here

Frank Stone
10 Days ago

Big cats live well with humans.


Reply
Lynette Blackert MacLagan
11 Days ago

It's a wild animal!


Reply
Michael Smith
13 Jan 2018

So were dogs, cats & horses years ago. That seems to be o.k. now. The Puma seems perfectly happy & is under the same control as a dog.

Robert Schmidt
11 Days ago

Isn't this the Puma who was born 30% smaller than normal, has seizures, and would be killed in the wild? Sanctuaries didn't want him because he couldn't go in with the other pumas. Or am I confusing this with another story?


Reply
Adrienne Moss
13 Jan 2018

Yes it is Robert.

Robert Schmidt
13 Jan 2018

Adrienne Moss Thanks for clarification, so this situation isn't black and white.

Patina Grogan
11 Days ago

What fucking idiot did this


Reply


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