News and blog News Overwhelming support to end pet monkey trade with Westminster petition hand-in Tuesday, October 17th 2017 75% of Brits believe that keeping monkeys as pets should be banned¹. This figure supports our campaign calling for urgent action to end the primate pet trade. A coalition of organisations and experts are calling for an end to the keeping and trade of primates as pets. The 56,000-strong #ProtectPrimates petition has been handed in to Defra today to highlight the misery suffered by pet marmosets, capuchins, squirrel monkeys and other primates. The petition hand-in coincides with Defra’s ongoing work on animal activity licensing in England, which includes the licensing of pet vendors. The coalition of animal protection organisations are seizing this opportunity to call on Environment Secretary Michael Gove to bring an end to the sale of primates as pets under this secondary legislation. In the video below you can see Joey, the capuchin monkey who was kept as a pet. For nine years, Joey was deprived of the company of his own kind. He was unable to exercise, had no access to natural sunlight and became crippled by bone disease. He has a misshapen pelvis, curved spine, poorly formed teeth and jaws and will always be severely disabled. Joey’s life was changed in 2007, when he was rescued from his tiny cage in a flat in Camden Town by primate sanctuary Wild Futures. He can now live out his life surrounded by monkey friends, with plenty of space and rehabilitative care. Joey and primates like him are the reason the primates as pets campaign is so essential. Alongside the RSPCA, Born Free, British Veterinary Association, Four Paws, One Kind and Wild Futures, we are speaking up for primates with your support. We must be their voice! Nicola O'Brien, Campaigns Director for Freedom for Animals, says: “Primates suffer immensely when denied the opportunity to live in their natural homes, with their families and they thrive without human intervention. Damage caused to primates kept as pets is not just physical, but emotional and psychological. Sometimes that damage cannot be undone, even after years of rehabilitation. It is vital that we ban the keeping of primates as pets in this country to prevent further suffering”. An estimated 5,000 primates are being kept as pets in the UK. Sadly rescue groups receive regular calls about the welfare of monkeys being kept as pets. Primates, like humans, are social animals and when forced to live alone, can become depressed and exhibit behaviours such as rocking and self-harming. In sixty percent of the cases the RSPCA investigated, primates were being kept on their own. It has to stop! Sign the petition today to put an end to the suffering! 1. All figures, unless otherwise stated, are from YouGov Plc. Total sample size was 1,680 adults. Fieldwork was undertaken between 10th – 11th October 2017. The survey was carried out online. The figures have been weighted and are representative of all GB adults (aged 18+).