How Bears Are Trained for the Circus is Heartbreaking
We hear a lot about elephants and big cats in the circus, but what about bears? They don’t choose to perform, either, and if you saw how they were treated, you would never go to a circus that uses animals again.
A PETA Asia observer visited 10 circuses and training facilities in Suzhou, China, and learned that in order to “teach” bear cubs to walk on their hind legs, trainers chain them by their necks and tether them to a wall. This forces them to remain upright, sometimes for hours on end.
No matter how exhausted or scared they are, the cubs must continue to stand, or they could choke or hang themselves.
Others are tethered by a short rope that’s tied to a hook in the ground, making it impossible for them to move more than a few inches in any direction.
They’re also forced to jump over things, walk upright on their hind legs, and perform other confusing tricks. They cry out during these training exercises.
The abuse witnessed by the observer in China is similar to what animals in circuses throughout the world endure.
Bear cubs are often taken from their mothers and forced to live around humans in an unnatural, stressful environment so that they can be handled and get used to being around people. When not being trained or forced to perform, they live in cramped cages and are denied everything that they want and need.
In their natural habitat, bears are curious and energetic animals who spend their time exploring and digging for tasty treats. But in circuses, most become severely depressed.
You can help bears used in circuses. Pledge never to go to any circus that uses animals, and encourage your friends and family to stay away, too.