DOVER, DEL. — The Delaware state veterinarian now will have greater power over the ownership, sale, display and rehabilitation of exotic
A new regulation finalized Dec. 18 by the Delaware Department of Agriculture orders that the state veterinarian is now "solely
responsible" for governing the permitting process, possession, sale, rehabilitation and exhibition of exotic animals, including
live wild mammals, hybrids of wild mammals and reptiles not native to Delaware.
Under the new regulation, the state veterinarian must create a list of what animals are exempt from the permitting requirement
and will have the ability to seize or humanely destroy exotics if necessary without notifying the owner.
The state veterinarian is responsible under the new regulation for preventing the introduction and spread of infectious disease
to domestic animal populations and can therefore prohibit exotic animal activities he or she deems a threat to the state's
domestic animals, according to the regulation. Prohibited exotics include gila monsters, beaded lizards and komodo dragons.
Animals exempt from the permitting requirements include chinchillas, degus, gerbils, guinea pigs, hamsters, hedgehogs, mice,
Norway rats, possums, rabbits, sugar gliders, anoles, agamas, Asian water dragons, basilisks, bearded dragons, chameleons,
geckos, iguanas, skinks, swift lizards and tegus.
The new regulation goes into effect immediately.