B.C.’s ‘Reptile Guy’ is closing his education and rescue centre.
The decision comes nearly a year after the BC SPCA raided the facility in Mission, claiming he wasn’t taking care of animals.
Owner Mike Hopcraft says allegations of animal cruelty have damaged his reputation, causing his business to take a hit in revenue
“When this happened, and there was national wide media coverage of us all of a sudden having these abuse allegations…We lost a lot of the presentations that we would get, we lost a lot schools, a lot of festivals at fairs that we would do for advertising in the summertime, and you know, we thought ‘we can pull through.'”
Hopcraft say charges have yet to be approved.
“The way we fund our rescue is with our education program, we go to schools, we go to daycares and all that and we do presentations teaching people about the animals. Over the last months, we’ve just been getting more and more behind on the bills and our rent and everything.”
He says he’s $25,000 in debt and is barely breaking even.
The Mission facility will close its doors on November 19.
And what will happen to the animals?
“We’ve already had an outpouring of people wanting to adopt animals and all that.”
CKNW has reached out to the SPCA.