Baboons, kangaroos and scorpions among animals now banned in Loudoun Co.

Private ownership and breeding of certain exotic and venomous animals is now banned in Loudoun County, Virginia.

The county’s Board of Supervisors adopted a new section to Chapter 612, Dogs and Other Animals, of the Codified Ordinances of Loudoun County on Tuesday.

It restricts private ownership of certain exotic animals such as wolf hybrids, kangaroos, scorpions, baboons, alligators, venomous snakes, other venomous reptiles and nonnative venomous spiders that pose a threat to public health and safety.

Current owners of those animals will be allowed to keep them, but must register them through a process the county will establish to ensure awareness by first responders in the event of an emergency.

That registry will be posted on Loudoun County’s government website once it is established.

The ordinance does not impact entities “that are licensed or permitted through the Virginia Department of Wildlife Resources or other state or federal agencies to house restricted species, such as zoos, exhibitors or rehabilitators,” according to a Loudoun County Board of Supervisors statement.

The board held a meeting last December to discuss the ban, which was proposed by Loudoun County Animal Services after voting unanimously to support it.

The county’s animal services said it discovered that, in the event of a nonnative venomous snake biting an officer, treatment would be hard to come by as antivenom antidotes are not readily available in Loudoun County.

Loudoun County Animal Services officers’ collective lived experiences investigating complaints involving wolf hybrids, scorpions, monkeys and venomous snake species, according to the board’s statement.

Similar ordinances already exist in other Virginia jurisdictions, such as Arlington, Fairfax, and Prince William counties, plus D.C. and Maryland.

Hugh Garbrick

Hugh graduated from the University of Maryland’s journalism college in 2020. While studying, he interned at the Queen Anne & Magnolia News, a local paper in Seattle, and reported for the school’s Capital News Service. Hugh is a lifelong MoCo resident, and has listened to the local radio quite a bit.

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