Jungle Friends Primate Sanctuary, located on 12 acres in Gainesville, FL is a safe haven for primates from all over the United States that have been abused, confiscated by authorities, retired from research, or were once pets. Jungle Friends is home to over 100 primates and has a long waiting list.
Primates are any of an order of mammals that are characterized especially by advanced development of binocular vision, specialization of the appendages for grasping and enlargement of the cerebral hemispheres. That includes apes, monkeys and related forms like lemurs and tarsiers.
Though Jungle Friends specializes in New World primates, it is available to help any primate in captivity by giving them a permanent home or working with their caregiver to find a safe, healthy and stimulating environment for the primate in their care.
Jungle Friends, like SPCA International, discourages the public from keeping primates as “pets” and hopes the practice of trapping monkeys in the wild and forcing them to live in captivity will end. Many monkeys that are found in exotic pet stores or sold by private distributors are baby monkeys that were once pulled from their mother’s arms, sometimes when they are only three days old. It is not hard to imagine the horror both mother and baby must feel during this traumatic and forced separation. Sadly, it can take a lifetime for the grief-stricken mother to come out of a depression brought on by such thievery.
Although primates are cute and seem like they would be fun to own, they are wild and exotic animals and are not appropriate for any household to have as a pet. In many states it is illegal to own an exotic animal and requires special licensing and approval from local authorities. It is important to know that these magnificent creatures cannot be adapted to our society; nor can they be rehabilitated and released back into the wild.
Jungle Friends works toward creating a better life for the unfortunate primates who have found themselves helpless victims in a captive situation. It works in cooperation with other credible animal sanctuaries, primate associations and animal protection organizations.
Jungle Friends' ability to do this charitable work and provide a safe haven for its resident primates, as well as doing educational outreach and assisting with the rescuing of any primate in a crisis situation, depends solely upon donations.
SPCA International applauds Jungle Friends’ commitment to ensure that the primates who come into its care receive all that it needs to be happy socially, psychologically and physically. If you would like to learn more about Jungle Friends please visit www.junglefriends.org.