Groundviews

Stop taking us kids to the zoo!

Photo from Rally to help the animals in the Dehiwela zoo

Some grown ups might think that they’re giving their kid a treat by taking them to the zoo, but actually they are not. Children hate seeing suffering animals in tiny cages with sad faces. We also hate seeing noble animals like elephants doing stupid tricks.

I once went to the Dehiwela Zoo and saw the elephant show. It was terrifying to see wonderful, wild creatures being forced to put on entertainment. Kids may think the elephants want to do these tricks, but they are frightened. The mahout is always standing close to the elephants with a pointed ankus, ready to prod the elephants when they don’t do their tricks.  This is very bad because elephants have very sensitive skin.  Kids don’t want to see animals being controlled through fear.

But there is a way to stop this torture. There was a rally to help the animals in the Dehiwela Zoo on Saturday September 12th.  It started at the Dehiwela Zoo and proceeded to the President’s Council in front of the Galle Face Green. I was happy to be part of this rally. The kind people who organized it were Fahima Sahabdeen, Sharmini Serasinghe, Faith Ratnayake, Reza Mansoor and Nafisa Thahirally, all concerned citizens.

The purpose of the rally was to draw attention to the crowded animals in the zoo. The cages are too small. Elephants are always chained and don’t have enough exercise. They are also made to do awful tricks. The animals don’t deserve this. The rally hopes to send the elephants to a place that is closer to their natural habitat, such as the open enclosure at the new Pinnawala Zoo in Wagolla. They also want an end to the elephant shows.  Instead, they would like the zoo to have an education and interpretation program to teach visitors about elephant conservation.

Please help these wild creatures roam free and make their suffering stop by signing this petition.

Written by a 10-year-old animal lover.