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Tags: zoo | tug of war | lion

Bad Idea! Zoo Lets Kids Compete in Tug of War Against Lion

Bad Idea! Zoo Lets Kids Compete in Tug of War Against Lion
(Nejron/Dreamstime)

Friday, 22 February 2019 01:07 PM

A British zoo is offering member of the public, including children as young as eight, the chance to play tug of war against a lion or tiger. The attraction, which was launched by Dartmoor Zoo weeks ago, allows teams of four to pull on a rope with a chunk of meat tied to the other end through the big cat's enclosure, tempting the animal to chase and grab it. A game of tug of war ensues, NewsHub reported.

Animal rights activists are up in arms and have launched a petition calling for the attraction to be canned. Over 2,600 signatures have been collected.

"It feels like we're going backwards, the zoo is acting more like a circus rather than somewhere that really cares about the health and safety of the endangered animals in their captivity," said campaign organizer Sue Dally in the online petition. "The zoo claims it's to give the animals intellectual exercise and fun, but it comes across as putting profits before the animal's welfare. There are plenty of ways that experienced professionals can care for the rare animals, without turning them in to a novelty play thing for tourists."

Dartmoor Zoo owner Benjamin Mee said there was nothing wrong with the attraction, adding that animals naturally engaged in games of tug of war in the wild when tugging on carcasses.

"People are making a fuss about nothing," he said, according to the Plymouth Herald. "I think this is 100 per cent the right thing to be doing; the lion loves it."

Mee said that members of the public have raised concerns that the lion would not get fed unless it won the game but this, he explained, was not true. He noted that another issue raised was about the animal's teeth but argued that their teeth were strong enough to handle the game of tug of war.

"That's nature isn't it, it's gruesome. In the wild the level of force a lion puts its whole physique through is considerably more than we can replicate," he said. Mee added that the zoo was a charity organization and the proceeds would go towards upgrading animal enclosures however the RSPCA slammed Dartmoor.

"We understand the zoo feels this will provide physical enrichment for these big cats but there are many alternative ways of doing this and we feel it should not be marketed for public entertainment and that this activity does not promote respect for animals," a spokesperson said, according to The Independent.

A British zoo is offering member of the public, including children as young as eight, the chance to play tug of war against a lion or tiger. The attraction, which was launched by Dartmoor Zoo weeks ago, allows teams of four to pull on a rope with a chunk of meat tied to the other end through the big cat's enclosure, tempting the animal to chase and grab it. A game of tug of war ensues, NewsHub reported.

Animal rights activists are up-in-arms and have launched a petition calling for the attraction to be canned. Over 2,600 signatures have been collected.

"It feels like we're going backwards, the zoo is acting more like a circus rather than somewhere that really cares about the health and safety of the endangered animals in their captivity," said campaign organizer Sue Dally in the online petition. "The zoo claims it's to give the animals intellectual exercise and fun, but it comes across as putting profits before the animal's welfare. There are plenty of ways that experienced professionals can care for the rare animals, without turning them in to a novelty play thing for tourists."

Dartmoor Zoo owner Benjamin Mee said there was nothing wrong with the attraction, adding that animals naturally engaged in games of tug of war in the wild when tugging on carcasses.

"People are making a fuss about nothing," he said, according to the Plymouth Herald. "I think this is 100 per cent the right thing to be doing; the lion loves it."

Mee said that members of the public have raised concerns that the lion would not get fed unless it won the game but this, he explained, was not true. He noted that another issue raised was about the animal's teeth but argued that their teeth were strong enough to handle the game of tug of war.

"That's nature isn't it, it's gruesome. In the wild the level of force a lion puts its whole physique through is considerably more than we can replicate," he said. Mee added that the zoo was a charity organization and the proceeds would go towards upgrading animal enclosures however the RSPCA slammed Dartmoor.

"We understand the zoo feels this will provide physical enrichment for these big cats but there are many alternative ways of doing this and we feel it should not be marketed for public entertainment and that this activity does not promote respect for animals," a spokesperson said, according to The Independent.

© 2022 Newsmax. All rights reserved.


TheWire
A British zoo is offering member of the public, including children as young as eight, the chance to play tug of war against a lion or tiger. The attraction, which was launched by Dartmoor Zoo weeks ago, allows teams of four to pull on a rope with a chunk of meat tied to the...
zoo, tug of war, lion
828
2019-07-22
Friday, 22 February 2019 01:07 PM
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