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ENTERTAINMENT

Animals aren’t performers, or spectacles to imprison and gawk at, or circus clowns. Yet, animals are abused and exploited in a variety of forms of “entertainment.” Too often animals are forced into the role of unwilling performer and subjected to abuses and substandard conditions in zoos, aquariums, circuses, or other places and exhibits. Animals in zoos despair so much over their lack of space, privacy, physical exercise, and mental stimulation that they often resort to self-mutilation and other abnormal and self-destructive behaviors. At aquariums and marine parks, trainers force the dolphins to do tricks by withholding food and by keeping them isolated. For an animal who is used to having hundreds of other mates around and swim up to 161 kilometers a day, this is torture. Animals used by circuses suffer even when they’re not performing or training. They endure days of being boxed in uncomfortable cages, sometimes in the middle of heat waves, traveling from one city to the next. They’re rarely given medical attention, on or off the road. Animals are also exploited and mistreated for human amusement in horse and greyhound racing, cockfighting and dog fighting, and in shopping malls, fairs and schools where they are put on public display or even brought in as rides, like elephant or camel rides.

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