The opportunity to interact with wild animals can be one of the most rewarding and memorable travel experiences, however, any time humans and wild animals come together there is also potential for danger, harm and abuse. Responsible travellers need to be informed.
The reality is, animal suffering, cruelty and abuse is a massive global problem, and it’s one that needs to be addressed. The good news is, as one of the largest sectors in the world — supporting 28 million jobs and generating 9.8 per cent of global
Naturally, Canadians who are passionate about experiencing the rest of the planet are also likely going to be passionate about protecting it. Which is why, when it comes to animal-related travel experiences, it’s so important that Canadian travellers think about the choices they make and use their buying power to generate good.
Take elephant-related travel experiences, for example. Huge, highly intelligent and extremely social, elephants are undeniably one of the most unforgettable animals to see up close. Which is why millions of people around the world — on safaris, in zoos, at temples, in sanctuaries — choose to make elephant-related experiences a part of their travel plans every year.
However, what many don’t realize is the potential harm they are causing by supporting attractions that abuse elephants, primarily because they don’t realize just how many attractions are engaged in abuse.
(Photo: Xinhua News Agency via Getty Images)
There are a number of elephant experiences that appear harmless, but are in fact traumatic and even painful for elephants, so it’s vital that conscientious travellers make themselves aware of what to look for when they travel to ensure that the experiences they seek out are rewarding for themselves, as well as the animals involved.
One thing Canadians should keep in mind as they seek out any animal-friendly travel experience is how they live naturally in the wild, because, if the attraction or experience is having the animal do things they wouldn’t naturally do in the wild, then they’ve been forced against their will into doing it.
For instance, in the wild, elephants would never let you climb on top of them, nor would they perform for you. In order to train an elephant to do these unnatural acts, they first need to be broken, a process as brutal as its name would suggest. The goal is to take these highly social and emotional animals and crush their spirit. Breaking an elephant involves starvation, the infliction of pain through use of bullhooks and whips, and slowly, over time, wearing them down to the point that they will perform or let people mount them out of fear of being tortured again.
Responsible travellers can also look for tell-tale signs that indicate a pattern of abuse.
Because of this, riding an elephant, painting an elephant, or watching elephants perform should always be avoided, with no exceptions.
Beyond the activities themselves though, responsible travellers can also look for tell-tale signs that indicate a pattern of abuse. The TreadRight …
Source:: The Huffington Post – Canada Travel