The Number One Advocate for Teaching Proper Behavior Around Wildlife...
Help the Cause Outreach for Animals is solely funded by donations from supporters like yourself. Our tireless mission would be impossible without your help. Please consider making a tax deductible donation today in order to improve the life of an animal tomorrow. Click Here to donate to the cause. Thank you for your generous support. See the Film Our work was recently highlighted in the award winning documentary The Elephant in the Living Room. Director Michael Webber explores the controversial subculture of exotic pets by chronicling the lives of two men at the heart of the issue - Tim Harrison and lion owner Terry Brumfield. See the film on iTunes, Netflix, Amazon.com and where movies are sold. Genesis Award Winner Awarded by The Humane Society of the United States, film director Michael Webber and Tim Harrison received the prestigious Genesis Award for bringing national awareness to the issue of captive wild animals. Click Here to watch a clip from the Animal Planet broadcast.
TIM HARRISON PROTECTS EXOTIC ANIMALS AND EDUCATES PEOPLE by Josher Lumpkin Photo: Tim Harrison, Outreach for Animals founder   Tim Harrison is a self-described human/animal advocate. For over 40 years, he has worked with animals and people to ensure the safety and well-being of both crea-tures in a world that is in-creasingly full of threats.irteen years ago, the now-retired Oakwood Public Safety Ocer (Oakwood’s combination police/firefighter/para-medic), decided to start a nonprot called Outreach for Animals to educate the public, as well as to rehabilitate wild, dangerous and exotic animals that had been kept as pets by untrained owners. “Our educational facilities and our educa-tional TV is not fullling what needs to be done,” Harrison says by phone from Texas, where he teaches Homeland Security and FEMA courses at Texas A&M. “at’s why my organization had to be started. We have a simple concept. e police ocers, re-ghters and paramedics, the nurses, the doctors, the veterinarians and now the lawyers, from all over the country; and this is our mission: to teach proper behavior around wildlife. You sure as hell don’t see it on TV, and you sure as hell don’t get it in your educational facilities.”Harrison also starred in 2011 documentary, “e Elephant in the Living Room,” a heart-wrenching documentary that is currently stream- ing on Netix and Amazon. e lm follows Harrison as he aempts to prevent tragedy for Ohio man Terry Brumeld, the owner of two very large African lions. “Mike Webber, who is the lmmaker, did a fantastic job at not taking any sides,” Har-rison says. “Michael Moore chose that as the most perfect documentary out that year. We won several awards and were shown at a bunch of festivals. [Webber] did a perfect job. He didn’t pick any sides.”Harrison explained that the big striped cats people are keeping in their homes and backyards aren’t even really tigers anymore – they’re a whole new breed.“What they’re breeding now are all mus,” he explains. “ey’re mixtures of Siberian and Bengal. ey’re bred in some-body’s backyard, and that’s why we have oversaturation of them. ey’re American Tigers. ey’re not ever going to go back to the wild. So, it’s the saddest thing you’re ever gonna see, but that’s just one of the things we’re ghting right now, is to get people to wake up. We have more tigers in the state of Ohio in people’s ownership than they had in India, which only had 1,400 last year”Now, you’re probably thinking, “Why on earth would anyone want to own an animal that can kill you?” Harrison believes the an-swer is buried in the Ameri-can institutions of consum-erism and ownership.“You remember ‘101 Dal-matians,’ right?” he asks. “As soon as it came out everybody bought Dalma-tians, didn’t they? Ask the Humane Societies around the country. ey got over-whelmed with them. Same with ‘Finding Nemo,’ another perfect ex-ample. e whole stinking movie was ‘don’t put me in an aquarium.’ e American citi-zens saw that movie, and clownsh turned into a 3.5 billion dollar industry the very next year. So, we have this idea in the Unit-ed States that we must have. We must be able to control.You can buy a tiger, but you can’t buy common sense. at’s the problem.”Harrison also discussed legislation that Outreach for Animals is backing. “ere’s a national law we’re pushing right now called the Big Cat Public Safety Protection Act,” he explains. “e American Bar Association, emergency room doctors, sheris across the country are all on board with it. We’re pushing this year, and hope-fully we’re gonna get that law passed. And it’s for people not to be able to breed big cats in their backyards. Sounds like common sense, right? Untrained people should not own these animals.”Before going out to wres-tle the wildlife in Ohio’s beautiful springtime wilder-ness, Harrison wants you to remember, “Don’t be ob-noxious outsiders when you go into the woods. Be part of the environment. Don’t go crashing in like Steve Irwin. Let’s go back to re-specting these creatures for what really are, and enjoy them from a distance.And get dogs and cats that are waiting for a home right now. ey’re waiting!” To the people who own exotic animals like bears, ti-gers and venomous snakes, these pets are family mem-bers. ey love them like their children. e problem, Harrison says, is not a short-age of love, but instead a dis-regard for the animal’s well-being. “Ninety-ve percent of all dangerous wild and exotic animals kept as pets have never seen a veterinarian,” Harrison says. “at’s something people really need to know. When you buy something like this, who’s the veterinarian that’s gonna take care of it? ese people love these animals, but they’re loving them to death. Because there’s a lot of these animals that are dying in people’s backyards that we don’t even know about. “You can buy a tiger, but you can’t buy common sense. That’s the problem.” – Tim Harrison, Outreach for AnimalsA human/animal advocateTim Harrison protects exotic animals and educates peopleBy Josher LumpkinIt’s sad. It’s emotional for the people, as well as the animals. It kills them both.” For more information about Outreach for Animals, visit outreachforanimals.org. - See more at: http://www.daytoncitypaper.com/a-humananimal-advocate/#sthash.KX3elA9Z.dpuf
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TROY — Tim Harrison loves wildlife, but the retired police officer will tell you exotic animals have no business caged up in your backyard. A tireless advocate for the respect of wildlife and promoting proper behavior around wildlife, the Miami East High School graduate and member of the Miami East Hall of Fame will screen “The Elephant in the Living Room” and lead a question and answer session Saturday at the Mayflower Arts Center in Troy. Harrison, who lives with his family in Oakwood and is a former Oakwood police officer, paramedic and fireman, has helped rescue countless wild and exotic animals in suburban settings over the years and been featured on numerous television programs. Due to his knowledge of law enforcement and exotic animals, Harrison often has been consulted on both the state and national levels regarding his capture and handling of venomous snakes, big cats, wolves and large reptiles. Many of those exploits have been documented in his three books, as well as on TV. Saturday’s presentation focuses on a ground-breaking documentary by filmmaker Michael Webber, which features Harrison and Ohio exotic pet owner Terry Brumfield, who owned two African lions in his backyard. The film delves into the previously little-known world of the exotic pet industry and the issue of captive wild animals. It has received numerous industry awards for best documentary. “The film has a life of its own. It just keeps going and going,” said Harrison, who is the director of the Dayton-based non-profit Outreach for Animals. “The movie takes no sides. It just shows the life of (myself) and the life of Terry Brumfield, a gentleman who owned two African lions in his backyard.” Since its release in 2010, Harrison said the film has been used as a tool to help get laws passed – both in Ohio and on the national level – that protect exotic animals and promote awareness for proper behavior around wild animals. “That’s what we’re working on now … and people have changed the way they think,” he said, pointing to recent changes in practices by national circus acts and laws enacted at the local and national levels. “Before it was just the animal lovers or the people lovers. We’re reaching for the people that are on the fence, the in-between people … and that’s who the documentary reaches.” Harrison cited a scenario he once tried out on patrons at a nearby zoo. “I waited until people came out and asked them ’Hey, would you want to have a monkey or a tiger cub?’ They said yes,” he remembered. “And then I gave them tickets to see the movie, and I asked them the same question when they came out.” he result? “Many of them were crying and said no,” he said. While eliciting tears isn’t the aim of Saturday’s presentation, Harrison is hoping people leave with a new sense of awareness. And if the documentary leads to more questions, that’s fine with Harrison. “I’ll speak as long as people have questions,” he added. The film begins at 7 p.m., followed by Harrison’s Q&A session at 8:45 p.m. Tickets are $12, with a portion of the proceeds benefitting Outreach for Animals. For more information, contact the arts center at (937) 552-5848. To learn more about the film or Outreach for Animals, go to theelephantinthelivingroom.com or outreachforanimals.org. More information about the arts center can be found at www.mayflowerartscenter.com. Reach Jim Davis at jdavis@civitasmedia.com
Award-winning documentary to be shown at Arts Center