Is keeping animals in zoos cruel

Is keeping animals in zoos cruel

Until recently the existence of zoos in our society was never something which we thought twice about Zoos were widely accepted as educational and entertaining institutions Children and adults love seeing animals and a visit to the zoo has always been something we look forward to Gradually however discussion has aroused about the morality of keeping animals and other creatures in captivity as animals have rights such as we do There are around 430 zoos in Britain alone and 10000 worldwide Conditions vary greatly with the worst being nothing more than concrete prisons holding very distressed animals Born Free Charity This quotation shows the insensitivity of the proprietors of such establishments and gives us a clear picture of the conditions in which creatures are kept

Rather than encouraging animals to thrive in natural settings zoos place very unnatural boundaries on their residents For example in zoos polar bears are usually confined to spaces that are only around onemillionth the size of their minimum home range in the wild Animals who stray across large distances in nature often develop zoo chosis in captivation which is similar to dementia in humans Typical behaviours resulting from boredom and distress when placed in zoo enclosures are endlessly pacing or swimming in circles Animals have evolved from nature just as humans and each belongs undisturbed in its own natural habitat To remove these animals from what they are used to against their will is immoral

As humans we must treat animals humanely in our role as stewards of the earth It is therefore unacceptable that animals in zoos under our care are suffering from neglect and early death through distress and health problems In the wild creatures such as the ones found in zoos are free to roam without restraint and interact with other species Whereas in captive conditions they are only able to mix with their own species sometimes only being a few of each species If these animals do not get on with the others in the enclosure they have no way of escaping each others company and animals like us have personalities and forge friendships and rivalries Furthermore animals do not gain the necessary skills for survival in zoos and so will never be able to be reintroduced back into the wild and survive Therefore they will have to live an enclosed cramped lifestyle entirely dependent on humans who do not always care for them appropriately for the entirety of their lives

On this note Attachment relationships between animals are often studied by separating pack animals and recording their subsequent behaviour Studies of primates have shown that separation results in changes of behaviour that are symptomatic of both psychological and physiological stress Because of this it is clear that in order to maintain physical and psychological well being in animals it is vital that animals which are used to being together with animals of their kind should not be isolated from one another In many zoos it is felt necessary that animals should be alone as it saves costs and ensures there are no conflicts between them Zoos are therefore knowingly causing the animals psychological and physiological trauma

Animals kept in zoos have no privacy they are continually watched by the public and have little enclosed space where they can hide Zoo animals develop anxious behaviours if they are always in the public gaze Being stared at all the time can be predatory and threatening Another strange species staring at you or enproaching in your environment is disconcerting and agitating for wild animals in the same way that a tiger coming into your house and staring at you would be not just threatening but simply terrifying This in turn can lead to aggression and distress in the animals Even when the animals are not disturbed by human presences watching over them there is constant noise of other creatures and maintenance works on the zoo eg Tractors They will get no peace and quiet This is not natural

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