A New South Wales petting zoo that provides baby goats for “goat yoga” events is facing 10 cruelty charges after some of its animals became dehydrated and malnourished and developed diarrhoea and infections. According to The Daily Telegraph, one goat was so emaciated and distressed that he or she had to be euthanised. This type of abuse goes against one of the fundamental principles of yoga: ahimsa, doing no harm. And it’s only one of the reasons why we’re not embracing the goat yoga “trend”.
Animals at a mobile petting zoo were allegedly found severely malnourished – forcing RSPCA to lay animal cruelty charges https://t.co/nUX5lHSG1h
— Daily Mail Australia (@DailyMailAU) April 6, 2018
In addition to enabling the neglect and abuse that often occur in petting zoos, baby-goat events also contribute to a cruel cycle of breeding, abandonment, and killing. Kids grow into adult goats quickly, so companies need to replace them often.
Because there’s little market for goat meat in Australia, male kids are often killed as soon as they grow too large to be used in such events. If they are of a breed used for milk, females may end up in the dairy industry, where they’ll be forcibly impregnated over and over again and their young will be traumatically torn from their sides shortly after birth. After a few years of abuse, they’ll endure the same violent death that their brothers did – in an industrial abattoir.
Petting zoos aren’t just bad for animals. Experts have indicated that travelling animal shows are hotbeds of serious pathogens that can harm humans, including E coli and salmonella. The area surrounding an animal’s enclosure can be teeming with bacteria. People who come into contact with E coli, for example, can develop bloody diarrhoea, anaemia, chronic kidney failure, and neurological conditions such as seizures and strokes. According to the New South Wales Ministry of Health, infections can spread through direct or even indirect animal contact and can, in some cases, be fatal. Children and those with weakened immune systems are especially at risk.
Don’t allow animal-act promoters to pass off exploitation as entertainment. The goat yoga trend may look cute on Instagram, but goats are intelligent, inquisitive animals who are known to be patient, nurturing mothers – they’re not selfie props. By informing others about the cruelty inherent in such events and explaining that they’re neither fun nor ethical, you can help stop this. Please stay away from petting zoos and all other animal attractions.
Please also visit our Action Centre to learn about more ways to help animals abused in the entertainment industry.Share on Facebook