According to Price, animals undergo reduced sensitivity due to changes in their environment (n.d., p. 245). Increased frustration is another major side effect (Ekstrand and Keeling cited in Barnett, December 2007, p. 214). “Many animals may never fully recover and die either in transit, shortly after, or even years later due to serious but hidden internal stress related problems” (Turner, 2008). Wild animals need to be surrounded by their own kind, and not humans. They have many psychological and behavioural needs which can only be met by living among their own. As they grow, they tend to develop mannerisms required for mating. As the environment does not adequately provide for this, these mannerisms turn into aggressive behaviour which can be directed towards the owner. The animals also don’t develop the social skills required to function alongside their species (Association of Zoos and Aquariums, n.d.). As described by The Humane Society of the United States, keeping them as pets “does not take the wild out of the wildlife” (2009).
Secondly, keeping wild animals as pets can have severe effects on the ecosystem. Breeding of species can be greatly affected as they are being isolated and taken away from their natural surroundings which encourage reproduction. Such animals may have desirable genetic traits which may prove to be useful for future breeding needs (Mendelsohn, July 2003, p. 505). As argued by Price, even if breeding does take place while the animals are in captivity, their “gene pools” must be preserved so as to establish healthy populations of such animals