Can You Own A Wolf In Missouri?
I recently stumbled across a post on a local Facebook page called The Burg where a poster was interested in finding out if anyone had any suggestions on a good food brand to feed a Timber Wolf. Aside from the fact that you don't see a post like that every day in a local Facebook group, some were curious as to the legality of owning a wolf. So can you own a wolf in Missouri?
The short answer is yes, you can own a wolf in Missouri.
That said, you can't just go find yourself a wolf in the forest, bring it home and keep it like you might a friendly stray dog. The state has some protocols you need to follow if you want to keep a dangerous wild animal as a pet.
According to the Humane Society of Missouri here's what the state statute says about keeping a dangerous wild animal as a pet.
"A person commits the offense of keeping a dangerous wild animal if he or she keeps any lion, tiger, leopard, ocelot, jaguar, cheetah, margay, mountain lion, Canada lynx, bobcat, jaguarundi, hyena, wolf, bear, nonhuman primate, coyote, any deadly, dangerous, or poisonous reptile, or any deadly or dangerous reptile over eight feet long, in any place other than a properly maintained zoological park, circus, scientific, or educational institution, research laboratory, veterinary hospital, or animal refuge, unless he or she has registered such animals with the local law enforcement agency in the county in which the animal is kept."
If you fail to register your wild dangerous animal with the local law enforcement agency in your county you're committing a Class C misdemeanor. That can get you a fine of $750 and up to 15 days in jail.
A few years ago Behka wrote a piece about the exotic animals you can own in Missouri. You can check out her full list here.