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PET STORES

With the increasing popularity and sale of many small mammals, such as hedgehogs and flying squirrels, the United States Department of Agriculture (U S D A) has recognized the need to increase oversight. In March 1997, the U S D A began regulating all pet stores that sell or exhibit such mammals, sometimes referred to as 'pocket pets' to ensure the health and safety of these animals under the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service's Animal Care program (A P H I S). Consumers in Texas that have a complaint about a pet shop that has sold an exotic animal should contact the Central Region, USDA/APHIS/Animal Care, P O Box 6258, 501 Felix Street, Bldg #11, Fort Worth, TX 76115-6258 or phone 817-885-6923, fax 817-885-6917.

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