Ethical Travel – Big Cats
Paying for one on one experiences with big cats isn’t exclusive.
Most of the people who partake in these kind of experiences do it with innocent intentions, however, the sad reality is that this kind of tourist attraction is cruel and inhumane.
The truth is…
Cubs, when not being unnaturally held by tourists, are shoved in small cages away from their mothers. The older cats are actually sedated with large amounts of medications to pacify them for tourists, and confined to small cages the rest of the time… not much of a life for a majestic creature who would normally spend its waking hours roaming across 60 miles of territory. Sounds mind numbing, right? It is. These poor creatures are visibly stressed behind the scenes and are often seen exhibiting unnatural behaviours to cope, like tail biting and restless pacing.
There are plenty of examples of animal exploitation for human entertainment. For example: lion taming, bull fighting, elephant riding, koala holding… the list is endless. Many of these places claim that they adhere to ethical standards, or perhaps that they don’t sedate the animals. The truth is, it doesn’t matter – these animals are in completely alien environments, in the hands of the world’s most terrifying predator: us. This causes them extreme stress. Imagine living your entire life in either fight or flight mode with your arms tied behind your back, been gawped at and groped by strangers. All in the name of a good selfie.
How you can help
Don’t pay for “exclusive” one on one experiences with wild animals.
Many of these places that exploit animals will claim that your money goes to support the nourishment of these animals. Instead, all it does is increase the demand for these soulless and harmful interactions.
Speak out against it, and don’t be afraid to be honest about the truth of these situations.
If you see someone doing it, don’t automatically assume they’re stupid and evil. The people who are partaking in these experiences usually have no idea what’s happening behind the scenes.
If you’ve done it yourself, it takes integrity and honour to honestly reflect on your experiences and voice your thoughts.
Sign a petition!
Many organisations around the world are working night and day to bring experiences like these to an end. You can help support the cause by signing a petition that’s taking a stand against these cruel acts.
Here is a petition by World Animal Protection that is asking trip advisor to stop promoting wildlife entertainment venues. https://www.worldanimalprotection.org.uk
Be the change you wish to see in the world.