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End the Sloth King's Reign of Cruelty

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Sponsor: The Animal Rescue Site

Protect sloths and other voiceless creatures from the grips of "The Sloth King" Larry Wallach!

In Suffolk County, NY, an establishment known as Sloth Encounters, owned by Larry Wallach, dubbed "The Sloth King," has become the center of a storm of controversy and legal battles due to alarming allegations of animal mistreatment. It's time to take a stand and ensure the welfare of these animals is protected.

Unveiling the Truth Behind Sloth Encounters

Nicole Rice, a former employee at Sloth Encounters, shared harrowing accounts of the conditions within the facility. Sloths, inherently solitary and sensitive creatures, were subjected to harsh treatment, including being aggressively awakened for visitor interactions1.

This disturbing treatment aligns with findings from the Humane Society of the United States and Humane Long Island, revealing a pattern of abuse, overcrowding, and stress inflicted upon the animals2.

Legal Battles and Community Outcry

The legal system has taken note, with multiple Animal Welfare Act violations issued against Wallach by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and a Suffolk County Supreme Court order shutting down the facility3. Despite this, Wallach has expressed intentions to reopen, challenging the legal and ethical standards set to protect these animals4.

The community and experts alike have raised their voices against the conditions at Sloth Encounters. John Di Leonardo, an anthrozoologist and president of Humane Long Island, highlighted the potential fines, incarceration, and seizure of animals Wallach faces due to his actions5. It's clear that the wellbeing of these animals has been compromised for profit and entertainment.

A Call for Change

The case of Wallach and Sloth Encounters is not just about one establishment or individual. It's a stark reminder of the broader issues within the exotic pet trade and the urgent need for stricter regulations and enforcement of animal welfare standards. By taking action now, we can help ensure that no animal has to endure such treatment again.

We must come together to call on the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Suffolk County officials, and the Town of Islip to take definitive action against Larry Wallach. It's crucial that measures are taken to prevent him from reopening Sloth Encounters or establishing any similar operations, as well as banning him from owning animals due to his history of violations and contempt for animal welfare.

Your voice can make a difference. Sign the petition today to demand justice and protection for the animals at Sloth Encounters. Sign the petition and together, we can close the doors on this establishment for good and work towards a future where the welfare of all animals is respected and protected.

More on this issue:

  1. Jill Webb, Long Island Press (3 April 2024), "The Sloth King: Long Island’s Joe Exotic Accused of Mistreating Animals Again."
  2. Rodi Rosensweig, The Humane Society of the United States (8 January 2024), "Shocking undercover investigation reveals physical abuse and poor conditions of captive sloths used for public interactions at New York facility."
  3. United States Department Of Agriculture Before The Secretary Of Agriculture (9 November 2012), "Order of Dismissal."
  4. Michael DeSantis, Patch (1 April 2024), "Sloth Encounters Shut Down, All Animals Removed."
  5. Carolyn Gusoff, CBS News (25 May 2023), "Battle over legality of exotic pet store Sloth Encounters continues on Long Island."
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The Petition:

To the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Suffolk County Officials, and the Town of Islip, NY,

We, the undersigned, are deeply concerned citizens advocating for the welfare of animals in Suffolk County and beyond. We urgently call on you to take decisive actions against Larry Wallach, known as "The Sloth King," who has been implicated in numerous instances of animal mistreatment at his establishment, Sloth Encounters.

Investigations and employee testimonials have revealed distressing conditions and treatment of animals under Mr. Wallach's care. These include physical harm, neglect, and forcing inherently solitary and sensitive species like sloths into stressful, unnatural interactions with humans. Such treatment is not only ethically reprehensible but also a clear violation of the Animal Welfare Act.

Given Mr. Wallach's history of animal welfare violations and the recent shutdown of Sloth Encounters by court order, it is imperative that measures are taken to ensure he is permanently barred from reopening Sloth Encounters or establishing any similar operation in the state. Additionally, we petition for a ban on Mr. Wallach from owning or caring for any animals, considering his prior convictions and blatant disregard for their well-being.

By implementing these measures, we can safeguard the welfare of vulnerable animals and set a precedent for the humane and ethical treatment of wildlife in captivity. This will not only protect animals from future harm but also reinforce our community's commitment to compassion and justice.

We believe that by taking a stand against such cruelty, we can foster a brighter, more humane future for all living beings. We trust in your commitment to animal welfare and look forward to your prompt action on this matter.


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