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Monkey Scratches Daughter, Mom Arrested

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Mariantonia Morales, 34, of Waterbury (Courtesy Waterbury PD)

Mariantonia Morales, 34, of Waterbury (Courtesy Waterbury PD)

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WATERBURY, Conn. (CBS Connecticut) _ A Waterbury woman was arrested, after her pet monkey scratched her daughter.

The marmoset is smaller than a squirrel, but the state has banned the species from being kept as a pet.

Mariantonia Morales was charged with risk of injury to a minor.

Beardsley Zoo Director Gregg Dancho says the monkey is being cared for at the zoo for now.

“They live on the tops of trees, in the canopy, mostly eating fruits and nuts, but they also will take live prey such as lizards or small birds if they can take them,” Dancho said.

Dancho says pet monkeys can become confused about whether they are humans or monkeys, and scratching or biting can result.

“[The zoo] has to have these animals in socially relevant groups.  When you have one monkey in your house, that is not a socially relevant group, and these animals do not do well psychologically that way,” Dancho said.

File photo of a marmoset. (YASUYOSHI CHIBA/AFP/Getty Images)

File photo of a marmoset. (YASUYOSHI CHIBA/AFP/Getty Images)

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