Ikea monkey sent to live coatless in animal sanctuary

By David Ferguson
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 15:36 EDT
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Darwin the monkey via screencap
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Darwin, the 5-month-old monkey who escaped from his crate and followed his owners into a Toronto Ikea store, is being sent to live at a private animal sanctuary.

According to CBC News, Darwin was taken from his owners, who were fined for keeping a prohibited animal as a pet. The monkey, a rhesus macaque, was taken to Story Book Farm Primate Sanctuary in Sunderland, Ontario.

Shoppers spotted the monkey in the parking lot of the Ikea store around 2:00 p.m. on Sunday. Clad in a tiny, stylish shearling jacket (said to be his favorite) and diapers, Darwin had picked the lock on his crate door. Once out of the car, he made a bee-line for the store, where dozens of people photographed and filmed him before animal control officials took him into custody.

He was kept overnight before being remanded to the sanctuary. Darwin’s now-former owners, who have not been identified, are said to be cooperating with authorities. They were fined $240, but not arrested.

Mary Lou Leiher of Toronto’s animal services said that the monkey’s jacket has been taken away and that he will learn to live more naturally at the sanctuary among other monkeys. He was frightened and stressed, she said, but otherwise healthy.

He will reportedly be fostered to a particularly “motherly” monkey who lives at the sanctuary.

Watch the clip, embedded via CBC-TV, below:

David Ferguson
David Ferguson
David Ferguson is an editor at Raw Story. He was previously writer and radio producer in Athens, Georgia, hosting two shows for Georgia Public Broadcasting and blogging at Firedoglake.com and elsewhere. He is currently working on a book.
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