12/05/14 Boycott Circuses with Animals!
Animal Friends invites citizens not to take children to see Circus Safari
- Dogs jumping on goats, and a goat on cow’s back is not natural or fun for animals
With Circus Safari coming to Westgate Shopping City in Zapresic, Animal Friends Croatia (AFC) invites everyone to boycott the circus and to write to Westgate at firstname.lastname@example.org, asking them not to support shameful circuses with animals. The association encourages adults and children to only visit circuses that attract thousands of visitors with spectacular shows that do not include animals
The Animal Protection Act forbids keeping and using wild animals in a circus. What’s more, 30 cities in Croatia have banned circuses that feature any type of animal. Circus Safari exploits over 30 domestic animals that have been subjected to training and made to perform pointless acts. It is surely no fun for the animals when, for example, a plank is placed on two cows onto which other animals climb and jump on each other’s back. Moreover, the animals are subjected to aggressive trainings with whips, electronic sticks and other “tools” in addition to stressful journeys from town to town, bad weather conditions, noise from audiences, and make-shift accommodation in tents.
Domestic animals and pets suffer in a circus just like wild animals; they go through the same torture of dressage, constant hardship of travelling, and are forced to perform and made to behave unnaturally. Every town and institution has the right to refuse domestic animal circus performances and should do so because the animals are not entertainers and they should not be exploited in order to attract customers and contribute to anyone’s profit-making.
There is educational and modern content that is more suitable for children than circuses which encourage children to accept the exploitation and abuse of animals as something that is jolly and fun. Animal Friends therefore supports the humane and pedagogical action by Lidija Janes, director of kindergarten Srednjaci, who sent a letter to Westgate’s administration after Westgate sent them hundreds of vouchers for Circus Safari. She states that their kindergarten “does not promote circuses in which animals participate” and that she will encourage parents not to take children to visit this circus. She emphasises that as an eco-aware kindergarten they are open to collaboration that encompasses “ecology, healthy lifestyles and nature and animal protection”, and not the torturing animals in a circus.
AFC requested that all animal shows in circuses be banned in Croatia. Article 4 of the Animal Protection Act forbids “using animals for circus and other shows, film and TV recordings, advertising, exhibitions or competitions, if this forces them into unnatural behaviour or it causes animals pain, suffering, injuries or fear”. It is paradoxical that the Ministry in charge considers that this provision of the Law is not being broken with domestic animals performing in circuses, who are, just like wild animals, subjected to rigid dressage in order to perform completely unnatural and ridiculous acts.
Exploitation of animals in a circus in any way is unacceptable in 21st century and it belongs to the obsolete and uncivilised way of treating animals. Children deserve to receive education about respecting other living beings and they should know that animals do not have fun in a circus and that they should not be there at all. The circuses of the future are circuses without animals where people entertain other people with their skills and knowledge. Animal Friends will continue seeking a ban on all animal performances in circuses.