Local exotic animal rescue group says it's facing a crisis

The volunteer founder of an exotic animal rescue organization in Foxtrap says he's facing an emergency situation, and is now turning to the public for help.

Some animals may have to be destroyed if homes aren't found

Craig Toope, one of the founders of the East Coast Exotic Rescue, said his rental home was recently sold, and he's having trouble finding a new space that's pet friendly. (CBC)

The volunteer founder of an exotic animal rescue organization in Foxtrap says he's facing an emergency situation, and is now turning to the public for help.

Craig Toope and his partner set up the East Coast Exotic Rescue about a year ago.

Since then, the organization has saved more than 500 animals, which the SPCA and Humane Services won't take.

Toope said if he can't find a new rental property soon that's pet friendly, or if he can't find enough volunteers to take the exotic rescue animals, some of them may have to be put down. (CBC)
​Toope said the demand for exotic animal rescue has exploded in the last six months.

But his rental home, where he keeps the animals, was recently sold, and he's having trouble finding a new space that's pet friendly. Toope says, ironically, many exotic pets are much easier to care for than more common pets.

"A snake is in an enclosure and is not going to destroy your house. A cat or dog may... My dog is after destroying my house a couple of times — it does a lot more damage than a snake ever did. So, finding a place for these animals is going to be really hard," he said. 

Toope said he's looking for volunteers who are interested in learning about how to care for exotic animals.

"I've got foster homes lined up for a couple of people, but like I said, that's just temporary," he said.

"The worst case scenario is that some of these animals may have to be destroyed."

Toope said the situation is breaking his heart.

He said he's hoping to hear from anyone who believes they may be able to help, to get in touch with him through his East Coast Exotic Rescue Facebook page.

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