Darwin, a five-month-old rhesus macaque, was a much loved pet who escaped from his owner’s car to go on his IKEA adventure. Unfortunately, owning monkeys as pets is not legal in Toronto, and Darwin’s lawyer owner was fined C$240 (£151) for owning a prohibited animal.
The little monkey has now been transferred to Story Book Farm Primate Sanctuary in Sunderland, Ontario. The sanctuary currently has 22 other monkeys on site, so Darwin will be able to play with other furry primates, instead of hanging out with humans and flat-pack furniture.
President of the Story Book Farm Primate Sanctuary, Sherri Delaney, said Darwin will be kept with a “motherly” monkey, who will look after him. Delaney also confirmed that the double-breasted faux-shearling coat which made Darwin into an internet sensation, will be taken away from him so that he becomes acclimatized to the weather.
Mary Lou Leiher, programme manager for Toronto Animal Services, stressed the potential dangers of keeping exotic animals as pets, as Darwin’s species can carry a type of herpes which is very dangerous to humans. Leiher said that Darwin was adopted in Montreal, when he was about one-and-a-half months old, and therefore has never had the opportunity to spend time with other monkeys.
According to Leiher, Darwin was very distressed after his IKEA trip – who isn’t? Hopefully, he will be happier in the sanctuary with his furry playmates.
Image via @broniewyn on Twitter