7 Animal cruelty facts and what you can do to change the statistics

Posted on August 29 2019 by

World Animal Protection US

in the Helpful Tips blog

Animals around the world suffer needlessly to support the wildlife pet trade, the tourism industry, and commercial farming efforts. You have the power to make a change.

7 Shocking animal cruelty facts and how you can help

1. 75% of WAZA’s zoos and aquariums offer irresponsible animal-visitor interactions

The World Association of Zoos and Aquariums’ guidelines state that members should not involve animals “in animal shows, displays or interactive experiences where animals perform demeaning and unnatural behaviors”. World Animal Protection surveyed more than 1,200 zoos and aquariums linked to WAZA and found that most of them offer cruel experiences with animals, including having captive animals perform stunts in theatrical shows and using them as photo props.

What You Can Do: Email WAZA to demand that they revoke membership status from venues which provide irresponsible animal visitor attractions.


Pictured: Pregnant pigs (sows) are kept in rows of cages (known as gestation crates) on a farm in Brazil.

2. 95% of pigs are raised on factory farms where they can’t behave naturally

3 out of 4 mother pigs in factory farming environments are confined to cages the size of an average refrigerator during pregnancy, so small that they can’t turn around. Factory farming is the largest source of animal cruelty in the world — it’s time for us to rethink farming. 

What You Can Do: Sign our Pledge to Raise Pigs Right and demand that companies like Walmart commit to higher welfare pork.

3. Most sloths in the tourist entertainment industry die within 6 months of capture

The growing demand for “wildlife selfies” has dramatically increased the number of wild animals abused for photo opportunities in the tourist entertainment industry. The most common species used for selfies in the Amazon are sloths. In the wild, sloths live quiet, sleepy lives. Being constantly surrounded by noise and people they can’t escape causes them unimaginable stress, and our evidence suggests that captivity is an almost-certain death sentence for many sloths. 

What You Can Do: Sign the Wildlife Selfie Code and commit to cruelty-free selfie and photo experiences with wild animals.


Pictured: An elephant giving rides at African Lion safari, Canada.

4. There’s a 96% chance that an elephant attraction keeps its elephants in unacceptable living conditions

When not performing, elephants in the entertainment industry are chained day and night, sometimes on chains less than 10 feet long. These elephants are typically taken from their mothers and young ages and beaten and abused during training. 

What You Can Do: Support the Wildlife. Not Entertainers Pledge and help us end the suffering of animals in the tourist entertainment industry. 

5. At least 75% of pet snakes, lizards, tortoises and turtles die within one year of becoming a pet

Wild animals that are kept as household pets will inevitably experience some level of suffering. It is impossible to meet all of the needs for a wild animal if that animal is not in the wild. Each year, millions of wild animals are captured from their natural habitats or born into captivity, just to become pets. Whether or not these wild animals were legally obtained, the wildlife pet trade perpetuates cruelty. 

What You Can Do: Sign the Wildlife. Not Pets Pledge and help us end the wildlife pet trade by pledging not to buy wild animals as pets


Pictured: A captive tiger paces back and forth. Credit: Anonymous, Blood Lions

6. There are 5,000-6,000 tigers living in captivity in China to fuel the traditional medicine industry 

While most traditional Asian medical remedies do not contain wild animal products, the ones that do are fueling a growing demand for big cat farming. Tigers and lions around the globe are being poached and farmed for their bones and body parts to support the traditional medicine industry. Those raised in factory-style farms are kept in cramped, barren enclosures and suffer both physically and mentally. 

What You Can Do: Support World Animal Protection’s efforts to protect big cats from the threat of the traditional medicine industry by donating today.

7. Newborn primates bred for the primate pet trade are forcibly removed from their mothers after birth

In the wild, primates are social creatures that live in large groups. Those primates bred to satisfy the demand for household pets are removed from their mothers at a young age and kept in private homes, where their needs cannot be met and their teeth are often removed as a method of taming them. Since 1990, approximately 300 people have been injured by primates kept as so-called “exotic pets” — primates do not belong in homes. 

What You Can Do: Message your state representatives to support the Captive Primate Safety Act (H.R. 1776). 
 

More Ways to Make a Change

Additional information about these animal cruelty facts can be found across our current campaigns and in our ongoing studies and reports. If you want to do more to support the animal protection movement, explore these helpful tips for encouraging better animal welfare and other ways to give to World Animal Protection.

 

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