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International Animal Rescue Saving animals from suffering around the world

The truth about sonya and kinako


There are many videos and images of slow lorises being kept as pets circulating on the internet. Two of the most popular are 'Slow loris loves being tickled' and 'Slow loris eating a riceball'.  

Without an understanding of the behaviour and physiology of slow lorises, it is easy to assume that these slow loris pets are happy and enjoying being tickled and eating rice balls. Sadly, this could not be further from the truth ... 

  • Sonya the slow loris is in an incredibly defensive position. Lorises are the only venomous primate and this venom is secreted from a gland on the inside of their elbow. Lorises raise their arms and mix the venom with saliva before biting their victim. The bite is extremely painful and the venom can bring on anaphylactic shock and even death in humans.   This slow loris is not putting its arms up to ask for more, it is terrified and trying to defend itself!
  • Both of the slow lorises in these videos are incredibly uncomfortable. Slow lorises are nocturnal animals, their eyes have adapted to see in the dark which makes being in a brightly lit room uncomfortable and distressing.
  • In addition, both lorises are severely obese.  In the wild the slow loris would feed on a complex diet of fruits and insects, owners often struggle to meet these special dietary needs. This leads to obesity as well as other serious health problems such as: infection, pneumonia, diabetes and malnutrition. Unfortunately many of the slow lorises that we rescue are suffering so badly from health problems relating to an inadequate diet that they are no longer able to be released back into the wild. We believe an inadequate diet and a lack of sunlight to be the cause of rescued loris Cepat's metabolic bone disease and Romut's infected tumours. 
  • Follow these links for more information on how the slow loris became someone's pet and why they do not make suitable pets. 



Videos such as this are causing an increase in the demand for slow lorises as pets and are therefore fuelling this horrendously cruel and illegal trade! As a result, slow lorises are in serious danger of extinction. 







Go to the main Slow Loris Pet Trade Information Page