When Pet Monkeys Attack

They aren't dogs with opposable thumbs...

The young woman whose hand is pictured here says: "I thought Kaylie was the perfect child. I bottle-raised her from infancy. She slept with me, went to do shopping errands with me and was part of the family. When she was a baby capuchin, I would never have imagined that as a three-year-old Kaylie would attack me with no warning."

"The nerves in my hand and wrist were so severely severed that I will likely never regain use of my hand despite all of the surgeries I have endured."

Bites from nonhuman primates can cause severe lacerations.

"Kaylie lost her life. She was euthanized by authorities. Anyone who acquires a monkey thinking it will be a suitable pet is embarking upon a tragic journey… painful and heartbreaking."

This nine-year-old Montgomery County, Texas boy was playing in his yard when he was suddenly attacked by a neighbor's 'pet' macaque monkey.

Of the attack, the boy says, "The monkey started jumping. He got this arm, then he jumped to this arm and started yanking, and going back and forth to a leg and both my arms, like, taking turns on all of them."

These head wounds were caused by a small female monkey which had been considered a "sweet loving pet" for eight years.

These leg wounds were caused by a toothless and "fixed" capuchin monkey. The woman whose leg is shown to the left wrote: I am sending you a picture of what Boomer (a capuchin) did to me last week and also to tell you that you were so right when you told me removing the teeth is no safe guard against getting hurt. As you can see, I was hurt from head to toe by him. I don't know why he got mad, he just attacked for no reason I can figure out. He was neutered at 9 months so it was not hormones! I didn't take anything away from him, he just all the sudden jumped on me before I even knew what was happening. I remember you telling me you can take the teeth and testicles out of a monkey but not the wild instinct. Now he is alone in a cage and I fear him.

These arm wounds, caused by a young female macaque monkey, were only a few of the wounds sustained in a single attack by a woman who was attempting to keep the monkey as a 'pet'.
Note: The monkey who inflicted these wounds has no canine teeth.

From An Email Correspondence After Being Attacked by a 'Pet' Monkey

Author's Name Withheld

I had just gotten off the phone and went in to change my capuchin Rus and he attacked me the worst he has ever attacked me. My husband heard me screaming from outside and came in just in time to see Rus flying towards my face. Blood was everywhere -- my blood. My husband grabbed the baseball bat and knocked Rus off me into a chair and grabbed him by the neck as hard as he could and threw him back into his cage and rushed me to the hospital.

I had 31 bites and tears on both arms, hands, legs and my left ankle was hurt the worst and one bite to my left breast. He kept attacking relentlessly, screaming and coming at me. There was nothing whatsoever to provoke him. I had just finished changing his diaper, he wheeled around, grabbed the leash off the cabinet door and flew into me screaming and attacking. I'm hurt really bad this time, walking on crutches.

The authorities were called in, they know it is a monkey, pictures have been made of me and Rus, he has gone into quarantine and after six months, he is going to be put to sleep. They wanted to take his head immediately, and I told them they just could not do that, he is the center of a lawsuit. A set of the pictures, along with a letter is being sent to the USDA authorities now to show that this monkey is being passed from state to state and how vicious he is and unpredictable. The doctor said that because of the severity of the bites, had it been a 3 to 6, 7 or 8 year old child, it would have killed them or they would have needed some serious reconstructive surgery. Had he had his canines, I would have been hospitalized. I thought I looked bad the last time, but it does not even compare. Like my husband said, he would hate to think what would have happened if he had already left for work and wasn't here when it happened.