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Old 09-13-03, 12:44 PM   #31 (permalink)
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V.hb,
Parents irrationally freaking out over an insignificant occurance doesn't mean they can successfully sue you. People can waste their money trying to sue for just about any stupid thing, you can't do anything about that. NORMAL, average people don't sue over nothing, a bite from a baby ball IS nothing. No stitches, no bruises probably not even a mark therefore nothing to sue for. They won't get anywhere with BS pain & suffering or emotional stress either because they wouldn't be able to prove any of that stuff either. Even if the parents do unreasonably sue you it won't get anywhere with a judge. I can't believe the over-reaction to the idea of a child holding a harmless creature, I hope none of you that are worried about this ever let a kid pet your cat or dog or let those animals outside. The risk we're talking about here is negligable, almost non-existant. This is crazy
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Old 09-13-03, 01:12 PM   #32 (permalink)
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I am gessing that your g/f knows the kids well and she shuld know if the kids can handle it I would say do it give them a note.In my exprans the parent of the kids would like the opertunity fore ther kid to have a new expireans which can be hard for them in the"real world" it will allso help them bild confadens and make them happy and it could spark a lite in on of the kids and then they could get a job in a pet store or a zoo that they couldnot have goten be for they met you so you could chang ther live for the better do you whant to miss that op even if just one kid gets interasted you have done a very good thing.so I say go for it have fun whith it and dot get mad at the lady frenid she was only trying to help brightn a little kids day and what is wrong whith that
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Old 09-13-03, 01:22 PM   #33 (permalink)
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I agree with Steele that you gf was only trying to do something nice for some special children. Don't be too upset with her for that. Just ask her for a heads up with her ideas next time. Tell her nicely that you would like her to share them with you first. Don't turn a nice deed into an argument. It's just not worth it !

P.S. Let us know what you decide & how it goes. The experience can be so rewarding for everyone.
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Old 09-13-03, 02:15 PM   #34 (permalink)
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I think everyone is missing the point of a lawsuit. IT isn't the lawsuit ITSELF that's the worry, it's the bad publicity that it would generate. It would be in the newspapers, local, maybe even farther, because anything to do with exotic animals and someone getting hurt, lightly bitten on up to being mauled, is big news. Let PETA get ahold to the news story. All it takes is one PETA member in a small town and it's national. We as herpers get enough bad publicity as it is. Laws in the US are being passed every day banning the keeping of certain reptiles. The lawsuit? Bah, it's just a bite from a baby BP. The publicity?? That could be holy hell. Not me...............
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Old 09-13-03, 02:25 PM   #35 (permalink)
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As someone had said, I presume your GF knows the children individually, and she should know whether or not they would cope with a snake in the room. A few things that are important are to make sure they know they are going to see a snake, and before you let them pet the snake hold it for a while and give a bit of information on the snake so that they see you handling and know it is not a threat.
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Old 09-13-03, 03:07 PM   #36 (permalink)
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Burm Baroness,

The only way to combat the bad publicity that every article about a drunken hillbilly being bitten by his pet cobra generates is to get more people educated about snakes. If kids and the public in general have exposure to the harmless snakes that form the vast majority of species on the planet there won't be so many ignorant, negative opinions. I sometimes wonder if some of us, the herpers, aren't also affected by this ignorance and superstition. Most snakes aren't any more fragile or dangerous than a house cat but here we are worrying about the repercussions from the distant possibility of a notoriously tame and completely harmless snake. If we, the people with the knowledge, treat these totally harmless creatures as if they were a menace then how can we expect the uneducated to think of them differently?
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Old 09-13-03, 03:43 PM   #37 (permalink)
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MouseKilla.
Are snakes domesticated? NO That is why we treat them differently. They are wild animals and will ALWAYS be wild no matter if it's a cobra or a ball python. You have to respect that and treat them as such. If the snake does bite, there could be a potential law suit, and most likely the parent will win. Stupid law suits happen all the time. Years ago some woman spilled hot coffee on her self from a McDonalds, sued and won! I remember another one of a man falling off his bicylce after going down a hill and sued the company that made the bike that there was no warning that the bike goes fast when it goes down hill, he won also! The best one I remember is a couple doing what couples do, on a subway track, train comes, runs them over, they live, the sue they win! Hell even burglars that break into your house can sue and win, if they injure themselves!

Now, back to the original point, I say you should at least let the kids see the snake. It should be a rewarding experience for all involved, but next time, speak with your girlfriend before she tells someone that they can see something that you are very protective of!

P.S. Mouse Killa, what is up with your avatar? Is that a child giving me the finger? Careful, I could sue for trauma and stress, and WIN!
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Old 09-13-03, 04:25 PM   #38 (permalink)
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So what's the magic number for animals to be considered "domesticated"? How many captive bred lines do you have to have before it's considered domesticated? Guess what? Cats are wild animals too. What makes them more domestic than a snake? Fur?

And by the way, most of the frivolous lawsuits you talked about above are urban legends. They did not actually happen. I believe there is (or at least was) a website dedicated to debunking these supposed lawsuits. I'll see if I can find it.
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Old 09-13-03, 04:36 PM   #39 (permalink)
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My point was not whether or not you are actually successful at defending yourself, it's that it will cost you THOUSANDS to DEFEND yourself. Win or loose, you WILL pay! As far as those stories being urban legend, check some of the court records in your area, I'm sure you will find people who have successfully won stupider lawsuits. How soon will it be before all exotics are banned? Not long if irresponsible people keep giving activists ammunition.
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Old 09-13-03, 04:41 PM   #40 (permalink)
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I know that the McDonalds coffee incident happened, it was all over the news when it happened, you're right, the other 2 I don't know if they actually happened, I just remember learning about them in my high school economics class. That was 7 years ago...

What makes a cat more domestic is, for the most part, if it's an outside cat, it will back to it's home, to feed. I highly doubt if you gave a snake free range of your back yard or front yard that it would come back home under it's own free will. You can take a snake out of the wild, but you can never take the wild out of a snake...
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Old 09-13-03, 08:30 PM   #41 (permalink)
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I don't treat them as a menace. I believe I stated previously that I routinely do educational shows. At schools. With Children. I educate. I help them understand that they are not "gross", "cold', nor are they slimy. The only reason I do this is for education. There is a line, however, between education and stupidly leaving the door open for bad publicity, and I refuse to cross it. Just my opinion.
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Old 09-16-03, 11:06 PM   #42 (permalink)
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Dear Dave,

I am curious as to what you have chosen to do.

Also, have you spoken with your G/F about volunteering your animals w/o your permission?

I see that you could be between a rock and a hard place on this decision.

I am also curious to see what advice you received swayed you either way.

I wish you the best of luck.

Lessa
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Old 09-17-03, 07:15 AM   #43 (permalink)
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Monty,
Yes, that is a child flipping you off. Well technically she was flipping me off when I took the picture but don't think it can't or won't happen to you! She is also undomesticated, completely feral. And maybe down there in the whacky ol' USA you could successfully sue someone for that kind of thing but not here. Just like suing someone for a non-injury such as a baby ball python bite would be laughed right out of court. See we don't have the right to claim for arbitrary, crazy sums of money for ambiguous damages like pain and suffering and emotional trauma. Our appointed, not elected judges haven't allowed that sort of thing in the past and now there is a fair bit of Canadian case law that works against it. Besides this type of thing is a civil matter and you wouldn't even need a lawyer, especially since it would likely end up in small claims court. Maybe you would have to cover the cost of the Band-Aid and Polysporin. The example of the cat, by the way, wasn't to compare a domestic animal to a supposedly wild one. The point was to make you think about all the times that you or someone you know was scratched by a cat for no reason. My sister was attacked by her own cat, sent her to the hospital. That sort of attack is rare but scratches happen all the time and people don't sue for that stupid stuff except for the one time in a billion cat scratches that someone down there does and if for some reason they win, it is all over the news. The fact is that anyone who has owned both a cat and a baby ball python at some time in their lives knows that the cat is WAY more dangerous. Yet no one thinks twice about letting someone else's kid play with their cat or maybe even their large breed of dog. Seriously, think about that. As I said before as long as those of us who know better act as if snakes are more dangerous than they actually are we cannot blame the public for making laws against keeping them. Look at what just about every zoo on the planet does; they allow members of the public to handle their big burms and boas in a safe, supervised way. As with any animal, "domesticated" or not there is a far out, remote chance of the animal turning on someone. (Imagine the consequences for a zoo!) They do it anyway because the benefit of having people appreciate these creatures and realize, unlike some of us, that they are not viscious far out-weighs the very small potential risk. If you are trying to help or protect the public image of snakes all you need to do is allow the public access to them, their placid nature will speak for itself. Let's stop pretending every snake is venomous, hiding behind hooks and shields for an animal about as dangerous as an angry earth worm, it's just foolish.
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Old 09-17-03, 08:46 AM   #44 (permalink)
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Well I called it off for tonight. I would like to show these children the snake, and let them touch it, but on the other hand, the snake currently isn't being her normal energitic self, so until things return to normal with the snake, the kids will have to wait.

Mousekilla,

Where is that child feral to? I certainly wouldn't want to meet her in a dark alley........

Dave
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Old 09-17-03, 09:28 AM   #45 (permalink)
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She was discovered on Crown land in the Algonquin Park area. Surviving on insects and small rodents she has developed a type of toxic saliva. And no, you certainly would not want to meet her in an alley or anywhere outside of her plexi-glass enclosure. I wouldn't want you to either. We've tried to avoid being bitten to make sure she doesn't acquire a taste for human blood.
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