BANGKOK – The group People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals called on Wednesday for a boycott of a zoo in Thailand after a video exposing alleged cruelty to animals in the country’s tourist industry.
The footage was filmed by PETA at a zoo and crocodile farm in Samut Prakan, on the outskirts of Bangkok.
The images purportedly show elephants, including calves, tied up with short chains in solitary confinement with injuries inflicted to force them to give rides to visitors or dance and perform tricks.
PETA also cited eyewitness reports of a tiger, a chimpanzee and an orangutan being used as props for photos with tourists, spending the rest of their time in cramped, undersized cages. Many of the animals exhibit signs of depression and psychological distress, PETA said.
“The animals at this Thai zoo see nothing but concrete, chains, and cages,” said PETA Vice President of International Campaigns Jason Baker. “PETA is calling on travelers around the world to stay away from any facility that sentences wild animals to a miserable life of violence and deprivation.”
Last year, the group published another video on the mistreatment allegedly suffered by elephants at a famous polo tournament in Bangkok, which led to several companies backing out from sponsoring the event, eventually forcing the hotel group which had organized the event to cancel it.