A California woman was bit by a capuchin monkey outside Antonious Pizza in Beaumont.
A local woman named Wendelin Ringel was sitting at a table outside with her three monkeys, two capuchins and one tamarin, she told Tricia Moreno they were her therapy pets, according to KABC.
Suddenly, one monkey darted away from its owner, as seen on a surveillance video of the event.
The 38-year-old woman suffered a laceration on her forearm and was treated at a local hospital, according to the Riverside County Animal Services Department.
“It felt like a razor cut and like a snap at the same time,” victim Tricia Moreno told ABC News station KABC in Los Angeles.
It was not immediately clear what may have prompted the attack.
Moreno said she believes the monkey was likely trying to protect its owner. She got a tetanus shot just in case.
The monkey was surrendered Tuesday by its owner, Wendelin Ringel, to Animal Services and California Department of Fish and Wildlife officers in Cherry Valley.
“A six-month quarantine period will be observed to make sure the monkey is not carrying the rabies virus,” John Welsh, an official with Riverside Animal Services said in a media release, adding that two other monkeys, a capuchin a tamarin, were also surrendered to the agencies because Ringel did not have the appropriate permits to own them.
“You can’t have exotic animals just to have them without having a special permit, and it’s not too hard to get,” he added. “It’s not a circus in Riverside County. You can’t just do whatever you want. You don’t just get to take your monkey to the pizza parlor.”
Riverside County Chief Veterinarian Allan Drusys described the quarantine as a “standard precaution.”
“It’s probably unlikely the monkey has rabies, but the monkey must be quarantined in the interest of public health,” he said.
If Ringel can file the proper permits and pay the impounding costs, she will be able be able to reclaim the monkeys.
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