Should Zoos Be Banned?


via. Minot Air Force Base

An animal kept in a zoo cage for people’s entertainment.

Zoos are facilities that confine wild animals to be shown to the public, studied, or for conservation. As many see zoos as a way to protect animals, others view it as a prison. Keeping animals in an enclosed space may provide it with food and safety, but could also cause depression and boredom for the animal. Not only do zoos affect the health of animals, but numerous incidents have occurred, risking the lives of both animals and humans. Despite how zoos say that they are for educational purposes, most people come for mere entertainment. For safety reasons and the sake of the animals’ health, zoos should be closed and banned.

When being trapped in a cage all day, animals can’t do much. Some zoo cages can only be so big for each animal. Many animals are cramped and often are unable to exhibit natural behaviors as they would in their natural habitat. Many of them aren’t able to run, fly, or climb freely. With various restrictions in some of these zoos, animals may begin to stimulate depression and a decrease in mental health. They do nothing but stand around all day in their tiny spaces with absolutely nothing to do. This behavior is known as zoochosis; something many captive animals get. Many symptoms include pacing, grooming too much, and bobbing their heads. It may seem amusing to some, but for the animals, it is torment. People should stop using zoos as a way to display animals for their entertainment and free these creatures.

Safety is also a very crucial part of why zoos should close. In a matter of twenty years, there have been multiple incidents between people and animals. The killing of Harambe the gorilla is a very well-known example of zoo incidents. In the Cincinnati Zoo on May 28, 2016, a 4-year old child had fallen into Harambe’s cage. Viewers thought he was aggressively hurting the boy when the gorilla was only trying to save him. One zookeeper, who mistakenly thought Harambe was harming the child, shot him with a rifle. The innocent gorilla died that day. Harambe’s species is also extremely endangered. Zoos claim to keep animals safe, yet many incidents like these cause animals to lose their lives. Closing and banning zoos would easily avoid accidents like these and minimize death.

Many zoos say they keep animals so that they can have protection and prevent endangerment. But the evidence of sad and killed animals doesn’t seem like a very safe place. Animals should be living in their natural habitat and not in a display case for people to see only for entertainment. If animal enthusiasts care so much about these creatures, they should set them free where animals can be happy and healthy instead of having them locked for admiration. Zoos seem nothing but a prison and by all means, should be banned so animals can no longer live in misery.