Though all looks great to humans, it is a very different story from the other side of the bars. The following will uncover the plight animals in captivity experience. It is well known that animals are taken, viciously, from their natural habitat and that they are held in zoos against their will. We as humans have the privilege of choosing where we go or stay but imagine having this taken away from you, imagine that you are now forced to live somewhere else, probably separated from family and friends.
That’s what we are doing to these innocent animals. For our own amusement we make their lives a constant struggle. The separation of the animal from its natural habitat s not the only cause for concern here, the journey they make to the Zoos are extremely long most Zoos do not provide the necessary means to make the journey as safe as possible for the captured animals which eventually leads to sickness or even death. Zoos deprive animals of the essential space needed, enclosing their lives in cages.
Disturbing instances of small cages are quite common in Zoos, but the most alarming fact is that more than 60% of the animals in Zoos have self inflicted marks on their heads due to incessant banging on the bars of their cages, this was brought to light by an Indian animal rights activist, Manage Gandhi. Shocking statistics show that animals will continue to fight their cages, they bite them vigorously and rattle them relentlessly which causes harm to the animal and can cause mental and physical distress.
In a British study, it was observed that tigers and lions have around 18,000 times less space in Zoos than they would in the wild. Polar bears have one million times less space which causes a lack of stimulation and interaction Beethoven animals. But it doesn’t stop there; caging animals for human entertainment goes to an extreme as the animals are mocked and even suffer health problems due to Zoo visitors. Visitors pollute the zoo and often harm the animals; visitors may feed the animals food that is a danger to their healthfulness the animals prohibited foods and littering all contribute to the health condition of the animals.
Not only do visitors invade their privacy but also cause a disruption to the their lives with their constant jabber and heckling. During the course of a Zoo animal’s life, they normally suffer distinct behavioral issues along with physical issues. The animals, when put in he cage or their isolated area, often become uninterested with their mundane life and become depressed due to lack of stimulation and interaction that they would experience if left in the wild. Abnormal Repetitive Behave or BAR, is common in Zoo animals. For example in elephants, they sway their trunks slowly, back and forth, which is a sign of stress and anxiety. The lack of privacy is also a leading factor to behavioral issues. Zookeepers often try to hide the signs of depression by treating the animals with tranquilizer or anti – depressants so that spectators would be unaware of the animal’s condition.
There are several signs that an animal is suffering from BAR for example; elephants sway their trunks slowly and in a repetitive motion, which is a sign of stress and anxiety Not only do animals suffer mentally but physically too, a study in the UK shows that 75% of elephants in Zoos were overweight and an only 16% could walk normally while the rest suffered from lameness, animals are usually under exercised . These statistics highlight the callousness attitude of humans towards animals, in the wild,wild; they these animals would be free from such problems.
The retirement of animals in Zoos is demeaning and appalling and no one being should experience such trauma. There are thousands of stories every year of animals that die due to poor treatment in Zoos. One particularly disturbing case was of three innocent tigers that had their lives taken from them in a German Zoo after it was revealed that they were not purebred. The GAZA (European Association of Zoos and Aquaria) uncovered that Zookeepers were encouraged to kill animals that were old or not of a pure breed; they would often murder hybrid tigers and sell their skin for large sums of money.
Zookeepers defend these hateful crimes by stating that the animals took up essential time and space, which was not acceptableness. My question to this weak statement is, why take them in anyway? These tigers would have survived living in the wild and so why would Zookeepers and Zoos force them into captivity to kill them off anyway? The animal’s food and diet is also compromised at the Zoo, keepers give them tiny rations of food to each animal that can often lead to malnutrition and starvation. And after observing case after heart breaking case, a pattern is seen.
Zoos do all this for profit: , hey cut back the amount of food each animal gets for profit;, they increase the number of animals for profit and they cage these innocent animals for profit. In conclusion, no, Zoos do not have a place in the 21st century. Conservation and research are said to be practiced in Zoos, yet most commercial Zoos don’t have endangered animals and kill numerous animals because of shortage of space of money. Animals are displaced, chained, whipped, mocked and murdered in Zoos across the globe and we as humans should put a stop to this ridiculous and disturbing act of violence against animals.