1. Zoos can be miserable for animals.
In 2010 In 2010, a Freedom for Animals undercover investigator recorded sick animals left without treatment and dead animals lying on the floor at Tweddle Farm Zoo. Freedom for Animals was required to take rabbits to the vet to be treated for infections and, following our expose, officers in the area confiscated one monkey that was left alone and was given cakes and other junk food items to take in.
Think that safari parks are superior to traditional Zoos? Woburn Safari Park had its lions inside tiny enclosures for the entire day. A government report on zoos in 2010 noted: “The animals were very overcrowded, and there was no space for individual feeding or sleeping spaces. There was no evidence of environmental enrichment. A few of the lions showed injuries to the skin and marks of different ages and freshness, while others were healed .”
In the latter half of 2012, another safari park was exposed for its shady practices. West Midland Safari Park was found guilty of offering cubs of lions in white to an infamous professional trainer of circus animals who then sent the cubs to an on-the-go show in Japan. The Lions are still in the circus to this day.
An investigation funded by the government of elephants at UK Zoos discovered “there was a welfare concern for every elephant in the UK.” 75 percent of the elephants had obesity with only 16% were able to walk normally, with the rest were prone to several levels of lameness. The remaining 20% had no foot issues[11.
2. Zoos can’t provide sufficient space
Zoos are not able to provide the kind of habitat animals can enjoy in their natural habitats. This is especially true for species that roam greater distances in the natural environment. Lions and tigers have about 18,000 times smaller zoos than they do in their natural habitat. Polar bears are one million times less area[22.
3. Animals suffer in zoos
An investigation funded by the government of elephants at UK Zoos revealed five percent elephants had stereotypies (behavioural issues) in the daylight hours. One elephant that was observed during the day and night was stereotyped during 61% of the 24-hour period[3.
Zoo animals spend 48 percent of their time walking as a indicator of problems with their behaviour.