Animals in entertainment are animals that are used for various forms of human amusement, such as in circuses, zoos, rodeos, aquariums, bullfighting, horse racing, dog fighting, cockfighting, and others. Some of these activities involve animal training, while others rely on the natural behavior or instincts of the animals. Animals in entertainment may be subjected to various forms of cruelty, abuse, neglect, or exploitation.
The use of animals in entertainment became more diverse and widespread as new technologies and industries have emerged. For example, the invention of photography and film allowed for the creation of wildlife documentaries and animal movies, which showcased the lives and behaviors of various animals in natural or artificial settings. The development of transportation and tourism enabled people to visit exotic animals in zoos and aquariums around the world. The rise of mass media and consumerism also increased the demand and supply of animal products and services, such as fur coats, leather goods, ivory ornaments, exotic pets, and animal shows.
However, along with these developments came increased awareness and concern about the impact of human activities on animals and their habitats. Some of the issues that have been raised include:
- The capture and trade of wild animals for entertainment purposes may endanger their survival and biodiversity in their native regions.
- The confinement and transportation of animals for entertainment purposes may cause them stress, injury, disease, or death.
- The training and performance of animals for entertainment purposes may involve physical or psychological abuse, such as whipping, electric shocks, starvation, or drugs.
- The breeding and disposal of animals for entertainment purposes may result in overpopulation, inbreeding, genetic defects, or euthanasia.
- The exposure of animals to human audiences may disrupt their natural behavior and social structure.
- The representation of animals in media and culture may influence people's attitudes and perceptions towards them.