As a serious animal rights supporter and vegetarian for 14 years, I was excited to read the news that China has announced a ban on animal performance. It’s about time.
Apparently this move was prompted by the release of a scathing report by Hong-Kong based Animals Asia in August this year. The report looked at the mistreatment of animals in zoos, wildlife parks and circuses across China. According to the Shanghaiist, animal performances in such premises have been banned by the Ministry of Housing and Urban-Rural Development since late October.
Now we just have to hold our breath and wait to see how the ban actually gets implemented on the ground. But I believe the success of the ban would be limited because it only deals with one side of the equation – the supply side. Until the government also addresses the demand side, by raising public awareness of the pain and suffering endured by animals both during their “training” period and while they are performing, as well as laying down heavy penalties over cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment of park and wildlife animals.
Go here to read details of the Animals Asia report. In addition, Animals Asia has partnered with the independent production company, Environment Films, to produce “The Performance”, a powerful film capturing the reality behind animal performances.