HR 1380 - Big Cat Public Safety Act - National Key Vote


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Title: Big Cat Public Safety Act

Vote Smart's Synopsis:

Vote to pass a bill that amends requirements governing the trade, possession, and exhibition of big cats, including restrictions on direct contact between the public and big cats.


  • Prohibits the importing, exporting, transporting, selling, receiving, acquiring, or purchasing, breeding, and possessing of any prohibited wildlife (Sec. 3).

  • Specifies that any person who knowingly violates the above prohibition will be fined up to $20,000, imprisoned for up to 5 years, or both (Sec. 4).

  • Specifies that the above prohibition does not include (Sec. 3):

    • An entity that exhibits animals to the public under a Class C license from the Department of Agriculture (USDA) or a federal facility registered with the USDA that exhibits animals and it:

      • Does not allow any individual to come into direct physical contact with a prohibited wildlife species unless that individual is: 

        • A trained professional employee or contractor of the entity or facility; 

        • A licensed veterinarian; or

        • Directly supporting conservation programs of the entity or facility, the contact is not in the course of commercial activity, and the contact is incidental to humane husbandry conducted for a specifies-specific, publicly available, peer-edited population management and care plan that has been provided to the USDA Secretary; 

      • Ensures that during a public exhibition of a lion, tiger, leopard, snow leopard, jaguar, cougar, or any hybrid, the animal is at least 15 feet from members of the public unless there is a permanent barrier sufficient to prevent public contact;

    • A state college, university, agency,  or a state-licensed veterinarian; 

    • A wildlife sanctuary that cares for prohibited wildlife specifies and:

      • Does not commercially trade in any prohibited wildlife, including their offspring, parts, or byproducts of such animals; 

      • Does not breed any prohibited wildlife specifies; 

      • Does not allow direct contact between the public and prohibited wildlife specifies; and

      • Does not allow for the transportation and display of prohibited wildlife species off-site; 

    • Has custody of any prohibited wildlife species solely for the purpose of expeditiously transporting the wildlife species to a person described with respect to the species; or

    • An entity or individual that is in possession of any prohibited wildlife species that was born before this bill’s date of enactment.