Ohio sheriff supports limits on big-cat ownership

Sheriff who oversaw the response to an exotic animal release is visiting Washington to support a federal bill


Associated Press

ZANESVILLE, Ohio — The Ohio sheriff who oversaw the response to an exotic animal release is visiting Washington to support a federal bill that would restrict the private ownership and breeding of lions, tigers and other big cats.

The Zanesville Times Recorder reports Muskingum County Sheriff Matt Lutz was scheduled Thursday to brief leaders about what happened when a suicidal big-cat owner released lions, tigers and other exotic animals that were killed by authorities last fall.

Lutz says the legislation would help authorities track the cats and conduct inspections.

The briefing also was expected to include actress and animal activist Tippi Hedren, who's best known for being terrorized by crows in Alfred Hitchcock's "The Birds." Hedren keeps rescued big cats at her California preserve and helped put together the federal legislation.

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