As kids, we're essentially taught to think all animals are cuddly, cute, and most importantly, sweet. Because of Disney and other film studios' cartoons, we see animals talk, smile, fall in love, and be friends with each other (and humans).

The reality is that's not true, sadly. Can you imagine having a full-blown existential conversation with a duck, though? How fun that would be. But this is the real world. Lions can't be friends with warthogs and deer and rabbits don't routinely sing. That said, it's not so much kids that clamor to bring home a bear or a talking tiger, it's the adults that want the exotic pets.

Iowa is home to many exotic animals, one of 'em cannot be a pet

One cuddly (looking) animal that's 100% illegal to own in the state of Iowa is a wolf.

Photo by Darren Welsh on Unsplash
Photo by Darren Welsh on Unsplash

Despite wolves popping up in Iowa and pretending to be farmers, they cannot be domesticated legally here and, that's likely for the better. While they look, and even sometimes act like big dogs, they're not dogs. They don't have that inherent love for humans. On the flip side, it's also illegal to kill them.

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Iowa law on wolves dates back to 2002 when the Iowa House passed House File 572 banning ownership of wolves, without a proper wild animal license.

Photo by Marc-Olivier Jodoin on Unsplash
Photo by Marc-Olivier Jodoin on Unsplash

While certain wolf/dog mixes are legal in Iowa, owners may be required to obtain a permit to own such an animal. Other animals on Iowa's no-no list include hyenas, leopards, bears, primates, crocodiles, cobras, and pythons.


If you love wolves, here in Iowa you can always root for the Iowa Wolves. The Minnesota Timberwolves minor league affiliate.

One strange animal you can own in Iowa... a skunk. But, ew... Hey, if you want more animal content, check out truly strange names your fellow Iowan has given to their pet.

Weird Names Iowans Have Given to Their Pets

Iowans submitted strange and weird names they have given their real pets and these are some of the strangest. *The animals in these photos are not the owners real pets*

Gallery Credit: Gabe Glidden

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