Animal Tourism – Behind the News

Animal Tourism – Behind the News


Wacky colours, spotted coats and
whatever this weird looking thing is. Our planet sure is packed with some
unique and wonderful animals. I like monkeys
because they’re really cute. I would love to see any type
of tiger in a natural habitat. I would go see some wolves because I like how
they’re the ancestors of the dog. Unfortunately, not all of these cool
animals live in Australia, so sometimes you have to head
overseas to see them. It’s a big reason why animal tourism
has become such a massive industry. Whether it’s taking selfies
with big cats, swimming with dolphins
or riding elephants. That all might sound pretty awesome but it can be a lot less awesome
for the animals involved. It can lead to wild animals
being taken from their homes or sometimes the animals are treated
really badly. For example, elephants can be beaten
and kept in tiny cages, while being trained to carry people. Tigers and lions can be drugged to make them calmer and safer
around tourists. And dolphins can be kept
in enclosures without room to hunt, roam or play as they would
in the wild. For a long time, animal rights groups have been trying to stop
tourism companies from promoting these kinds
of activities. And a good rule of thumb is
if you can ride it, if you can hug it or if you can
have a selfie taken with it, then there’s a good chance that that
animal has suffered from cruelty, so don’t buy the ticket. Nicola works
for World Animal Protection and recently, a petition
of theirs lead to Tripadvisor, one of the world’s biggest
travel sites, changing its policies. Tripadvisor announced
it would stop selling tickets to certain attractions
that are often linked to animal mistreatment,
like those where tourists get to touch captive,
wild or endangered animals. It also promised to put info
about the issue on its website. However, the ban won’t apply
for domestic animal attractions like those involving cats and dogs,
certain rescue programs or things like feeding programs that are run by approved
animal experts. Animal rights groups have praised
Tripadvisor for taking a stand, but some people involved
in the industry argue that some of these attractions
are just a way of life or, that in poorer countries, they just give people
a chance to make a living. Others say they give tourists
a chance to learn about the animals in them and that some actually help
to raise money for conservation. However, many conservationists say, “No matter what the reason,
wild animals should stay “in the wild, wherever possible.” So, what do you guys think? I think it is a good thing
if it’s supporting conservation. But it’s not OK
when it’s absolutely forced. You need to know if the place that
you’re going to with the animals, if the animals are treated well. I am 100% fine with animal tourism
as long as the animals are treated with the respect that we get
as humans, because you do have to remember
that they are just humans on four legs, essentially, because they can feel pain,
they can feel emotion and why should we treat them like
they’re just toys for us to look at?

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