Hareem Shah, Lions & Photoshoots: Why it’s not okay to misuse animals for human pleasure. Recently, a video of TikTok star Hareem Shah has been making the rounds on social media. The video shows Hareem nearly being mauled by a young lion while she poses for a photo with the big cat, as part of a shoot.
While there has been an increasing trend of using wild, exotic animals for commercial purposes i.e. advertisement, election campaigns- it is important to state the matter for what it is- a clear instance of animal abuse.
Many may argue that these exotic animals are household pets and have loving owners who love and care for them. However, sadly the truth is any wild animal that finds itself caught in the exotic pet trade experiences suffering. But why?
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A permanently captive wild animal is doomed to a life of confusion and stress
Wild animals have evolved and are biologically attuned to live as independent, free-living beings. They have needs, instincts and behaviors that are tied to their wild habitat, and a free-living state. It is inappropriate and inhumane to force a wild animal to live the captive life of a pet.
No matter how well designed a captive habitat may be, it can never be like the freedom that wild animals require. A permanently captive wild animal is doomed to a life of confusion and stress as the animal attempts to suit their innate urges to their foreign surroundings. Wild animals belong in the wild.
Domestic environments are just not equipped to provide wild animals with the care necessary
Despite our best efforts we are just not equipped to provide wild animals with the care necessary to fulfill their biological needs.
Therefore, we must give animals their due rights and leave the wild animals where they belong!