What is the most dangerous pet you can legally keep in the US?

While most states forbid you to own exotic animals, others are much more lax. All require you to keep the animals caged, so the most dangerous pets are those allowed to roam free – dogs.

It varies from state to state. Most forbid you to own exotic animals or at least require a special permit but some states are much more lax. In Alabama you can’t own a mongoose, but you can have a pet a lion or a tiger. In Nevada you can’t own an alligator, crocodile or raccoon unless you bought it before 1994 but an elephant, wolf or lion is fine. And in Idaho you can own any animal provided you obtained it legally. But all states require you to keep exotic animals suitably caged. So the most dangerous pet is the one that is allowed to roam free in the house: a dog. Thirty people are killed every year in the US by dogs.

Check out our infographic showing where you can and can’t keep exotic animals:

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Photograph: Jaf-Photo