A roadside zoo in our region is being sued over its treatment of animals.
The Animal Legal Defense Fund has filed a lawsuit against Farmers Inn, in Sigel, Jefferson County.
The group says Farmer’s Inn is maintaining animals in squalid conditions in volation of the Endangered Species Act.
“These animals, including endangered species, are being held in conditions that are not just abhorrent but illegal,” says Animal Legal Defense Fund Executive Director Stephen Wells. “State and federal animal protection laws exist so that animals won’t be forced to live in these conditions. The animals held at Farmers Inn deserve to be in naturalistic sanctuary environments that allow them to engage in activities natural to their species and necessary for their health. The Animal Legal Defense Fund will seek to enforce these laws to provide that for them.”
According to the lawsuit, Farmers Inn houses animals including a ring-tailed lemur, a black leopard, 2 bears, a gray wolf and a macaw in cramped cages.
The Legal Defense Fund also says visitors have reported seeing animals at Farmers Inn who are sick and injured.
The Animal Legal Defense Fund previously sent a 60-day notice of intent to sue. The organization says it has offered assistance in transferring the animals to other sanctuaries where their unique needs can be met. They claim that Farmers Inn has not responded to the offer.