Analysis Of Zoos Are Not Prisons: They Improve The Lives Of Animals

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Considering the many challenges animals face in the wild, it is understandable that people may be eager to support zoos and may feel that they are protective facilities necessary for animal life. In the article “ Zoos Are Not Prisons. They Improve the Lives of Animals”, Author Robin Ganzert argues that Zoos are ethical institutions that enrich the lives of animals and ultimately protect them. Statistics have shown that animals held in captivity have limited utilitarian function resulting in cramped quarters, poor diets, depression, and early death for the animals thus, proving that Zoos are not ethical institutions that support and better the lives of animals as author Robin Ganzert stated (Cokal 491). Ganzert exposes the false premise in stating …show more content…

Author Robin Ganzert states that in today's society Zoos are using “robust and sophisticated breeding programs” to conserve animal life. While the programs may conserve some animal life, the author over exaggerates the quality of the breeding programs. Most facilities don’t have the resources or the space to support a larger breeding program. Captive breeding programs also have a high cost to support and properly care for each animal so they consist of few animals that cannot sustain a proper breeding population. These programs can often fail to imitate wildlife causing major changes in animal behavior such as: a decrease in foraging abilities, decrease in physical activity, and some problems in social behaviors. Some captive species even have problematic changes in reproduction such as not be able to reproduce anymore (Lynn 1817). These changes in behavior and high cost are a major factor in whether these programs are sophisticated and whether the animals can be reintroduced into the wild and if it would benefit their …show more content…

He states that “Animals in zoos and aquariums can live longer, healthier, and richer lives than their forbearers ever did in the wild.” Studies have proven again and again that for most animals a caged life was a short and unhappy one. To begin with, for many species, a stare is received as a threat. With the public constantly staring at the animals, many of them become depressed. Scared and depressed animals might fill the hours with repetitive behaviors known as stereotypy: masturbating to a danger point, pacing their paws raw, or swaying endlessly from side to side (Cokal 492). Animals life spans in Zoos are also drastically different from those in the wild. Studies have shown that animals kept in Zoos live only half of the lifespan animals do in the wild (Cokal 493). This goes to show that when animals are kept in Zoos they do not live statistically longer or healthier lives. They live shorter, problematic lives due to poor

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