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Ikea Monkey Owner Protesting to Get Her Pet Back

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Earlier this month Darwin, a fashion forward Japanese macaque, charmed the internet by getting loose in an Ikea parking lot and wandering around in a shearling coat.

Turns out the little ape belonged to real estate attorney Yasmin Nakhuda. But it was taken into the custody of Toronto Animal Services after the incident and they’ve since transferred Darwin to an animal sanctuary in Sunderland, Ontario.

On Wednesday, Nakhuda held a 15 person rally outside of Animal Service headquarters in hopes of convincing officials to give her her monkey back.

Unless you have owned a primate, you can’t really understand my relationship with Darwin,” Nakhuda explained. “He was not a dog, he was not a cat, he was a little person…Japanese macaques, they have 93 per cent human DNA. So, he would act like a little child, and therefore when I call him my son, I’m not mental. I don’t think that’s the situation here.”

However, according to Animal Control, the situation is that Nakhuda was keeping an illegal pet. The sanctuary Darwin now calls home says the ape is doing very well in his new surroundings. “Nakhuda has no claim of ownership over a wild animal that is no longer in her possession,” the sanctuary added in a statement.

Nakhuda was already fined $240 for breaking Toronto’s prohibited animal laws. She has said she will move to a part of Canada that allows individuals to keep apes as pets if Darwin is returned to her.

Should she get her monkey back? Or is Darwin better off in the wild among his own kind?

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