Born Free Foundation - Keep Wildlife in the Wild

Behind the bars: bears in captivity

Dancing Bear and Owner (c) IAR
(c) IAR; Forced to 'dance', this exploitation must end

Bears are inquisitive and opportunistic and can suffer particularly badly in captivity.  Bears in zoos and circuses can display many abnormal behaviours, such as bar-biting, swaying from side to side, or even self-mutilation. Sloth bears are still used as ‘dancing bears’ in some countries, such as Pakistan and Nepal. Bears are caught from the wild as tiny cubs, the poachers burn holes through their noses with red-hot pokers, thread a rope through and train them to ‘dance’, lifting their feet to avoid the excruciating pain of the hot plate they are forced to stand on. 

Born Free campaigns to end the confinement and exploitation of bears and all wild animals for ‘entertainment’.

More about captivity issues here

Born Free Foundation
Broadlands Business Campus, Langhurstwood Road
, Horsham, RH12 4QP, UK - Charity Reg. No. 1070906

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