How do you feel about keeping animals in zoos? Read both sides of the argument to help you decide.

Reading

Are zoos a good thing?

Zoos are hugely popular attractions for adults and children alike. But are they actually a good thing?

Critics of zoos would argue that animals often suffer physically and mentally by being enclosed. Even the best artificial environments can't come close to matching the space, diversity, and freedom that animals have in their natural habitats. This deprivation causes many zoo animals to become stressed or mentally ill. Capturing animals in the wild also causes much suffering by splitting up families. Some zoos make animals behave unnaturally: for example, marine parks often force dolphins and whales to perform tricks. These mammals may die decades earlier than their wild relatives, and some even try to commit suicide.

On the other hand, by bringing people and animals together, zoos have the potential to educate the public about conservation issues and inspire people to protect animals and their habitats. Some zoos provide a safe environment for animals which have been mistreated in circuses, or pets which have been abandoned. Zoos also carry out important research into subjects like animal behaviour and how to treat illnesses.

One of the most important modern functions of zoos is supporting international breeding programmes, particularly for endangered species. In the wild, some of the rarest species have difficulty in finding mates and breeding, and they might also be threatened by poachers, loss of their habitat and predators. A good zoo will enable these species to live and breed in a secure environment. In addition, as numbers of some wild species drop, there is an increased danger of populations becoming too genetically similar. Breeding programmes provide a safeguard: zoo-bred animals can be released into the wild to increase genetic diversity.

However, opponents of zoos say that the vast majority of captive breeding programmes do not release animals back into the wild. Surplus animals are sold not only to other zoos but also to circuses or hunting ranches in the US or South Africa, where some people are willing to pay a lot of money for the chance to kill an animal in a fenced enclosure. Often, these animals are familiar with humans and have very little chance of escaping.

So, are zoos good for animals or not? Perhaps it all depends on how well individual zoos are managed, and the benefits of zoos can surely outweigh their harmful effects. However, it is understandable that many people believe imprisoning animals for any reason is simply wrong.

Topics: 
Language level: 

Discussion

What do you think about zoos? Are they a good thing, or is it cruel to keep animals in captivity?

Comments

m_lys123's picture
3x
1x
m_lys123 23 May, 2021 - 17:03

Zoos should be banned: a for and against essay

Throughout the past few years, many people have been debating on whether zoos are actually relevant in this day and age. Undeniably, since they still exist, it means that the cons of banning them overweigh. Or do they, actually?

Certainly, zoos can be considered as a great source of entertainment for people of various ages. Lots of families have the opportunity to visit and teach their children about numerous animal species which they alternatively could only view in textbooks. Another explanation as to why these places are currently beneficial is the fact that the existence of zoos creates many job opportunities, which in result boosts the country’s economy. These justifications are probably the main reasons for why zoos remain to this day.

However, it is definitely worth mentioning that there are quite a lot of disadvantages regarding the existence of zoos. First of all, even if being there brings lots of enjoyment to people, it may be rather on the contrary for the actual animals. No living creature wants to spend it’s whole life being stared at and contained in a cage, overall. Surely, animals deserve to live in their natural habitat. Second of all, it is crucial to remember that the amount of deaths which occur at zoos every year must not be ignored. A good example would be Harambe, a monkey who got killed by zoo officials to ensure the safety of a three-year-old boy, who climbed into the gorilla enclosure on May 28, 2016. As many state, this was not at all necessary and could have been avoided.

To sum it up, I believe that there are reasons for the existence of zoos, since they employ lots of people and bring entertainment to many families. Nevertheless, in my opinion, the extent of danger that comes from these places overweighs the perks significantly.

up
3 users have voted.
Kimchi's picture
1x
6x
Kimchi 24 April, 2021 - 13:38

I think that zoos must be more closed and people shouldn't stress and touch animals. We must reduce the number of tourists. As VR is getting better we can hope for virtual zoos? But does it even makes any sense?

up
0 users have voted.
Ilias6997's picture
0x
1x
Ilias6997 8 June, 2021 - 20:34

I think people should invest the money, which they made of the earnings of the zoo, to Protect the animals in their natural environment. The ought to maintain the animals and obviously keep them safe of the poachers.

up
0 users have voted.
Kostantinus's picture
187x
329x
Kostantinus 28 February, 2021 - 06:50

It is a coin with two sides. On the one hand, animals which are kept in the zoos have safer life, always have food, although the quality of food isn't always perfect. It's easier for them to find their mates for breeding what can help to conservate and protect the endngered species.
On the other hand, as the author said, the animals in the zoos lack natural necessary habitat. The food given to them not always very good and fresh. The space isn't enough big and, of course, sometimes they forsed to perform for the visitors. This fact can cause some illnesses and therefore shortened their life span.
To sum up, the issue about do zoos good or bad things depends on zoos' management and many different facts. There are two sides of the medal.

up
1 user has voted.
lama's picture
2x
1x
lama 27 December, 2020 - 11:43

I think zoos are both good and bad. The downside is that animals need to live in the habitat and live in their environment, people never want to live in a cage. Animals never want to live in a cage, but they live in cages in zoos. The good news is that animals can easily find food. Zoo workers feed and take care of them. Animals can find mates more easily in the zoo than in nature.

up
2 users have voted.
Jenny201's picture
5x
15x
Jenny201 1 November, 2020 - 01:20

I think everything in life has to be a double-edged sword that is both positive and negative. About positive aspects, most of the large, zoos are doing great work at helping to educate people and also helping conserve many of the endangered species. In other words, zoos save the genes of endangered species for future preservation attempts and captivate visitors, educate them about the value of wild animals, and why we have a responsibility to protect them. Regarding negative aspects, animals have to suffer in zoos. They get depressed, psychologically disturbed, frustrated, they harm each other, become ill, go hungry, and are forced to endure extreme and unnatural temperatures. It's cruel to use them for research. In general, we have to know what's good for them and improve an environment close to them. Don't just care about our purpose!!!

up
1 user has voted.
aljmnz's picture
0x
1x
aljmnz 29 October, 2020 - 01:38

I think it depends on the circumstances in which it is used. If it´s used for entertainment and pleasure, its a very cruel thing. But in the other hand , if it helps to preseve te species and take care of them in case they are endangered, I thinks its a good thing.

up
0 users have voted.
Kalenkhoe's picture
3x
14x
Kalenkhoe 17 August, 2020 - 18:19

I agree with the writer that it depends on the management of zoo and indeed benefits of zoos outweigh its harm.
Although, noone should be allowed to captivate animals or birds in cages for sake of pleasure.

up
0 users have voted.
AREVALOo's picture
0x
1x
AREVALOo 5 August, 2020 - 13:37

I think it is something very cruel and zoos should not exist, less those that help preserve species, in that case if it is okay that they exist.

up
0 users have voted.
IGYOON's picture
19x
2x
IGYOON 19 July, 2020 - 11:52

I think its never a good idea to keep animals at the zoo. Because the animals needs freedom . They should be independent. its also not a lie that they harm people but maybe only the savage going animals should be taken to zoo. And about the scientific research the animals should be taken to the zoo but later on they needs to be given back to the nature. And sometimes keeping animals at the zoo is the main cause for extinction of most of the animals.

up
2 users have voted.
ThanhBong's picture
1x
0x
ThanhBong 10 July, 2020 - 15:54

Zoos are places where animals feel safe and they are maintained. They are also developed in natural environment and they are protected by staff here. So, zoos are a good thing.

up
0 users have voted.
kimthao_60nna2's picture
0x
0x
kimthao_60nna2 8 July, 2020 - 08:49

I am sure that animals that are raised in zoos are less vulnerable. They will be protected and taken care of by qualified personnel. Its provides a suitable environment for them to thrive as well as they live in the wild. In addition to, preventing from the negative effects of humans on animals. That can be the best way to protect them.

up
1 user has voted.
kimphung6569's picture
0x
0x
kimphung6569 1 July, 2020 - 14:55

I claim that zoo may be good or not for animals cause it depends on how well zoo are managed and organized. Some species should be live in their nature environment such as tiger, bear, lion to avoid depression or mental illnesses and develop their inner wild. Besides, several species which is endangered should be kept in zoos to protect them from extinct like Panda. Eventually, the awareness is most important of people who visit the zoo and contact with animals.

up
0 users have voted.
AyuNguyen's picture
0x
0x
AyuNguyen 21 June, 2020 - 16:40

Zoos are both good and bad for animals. On the good side, it is possible to protect them from hunters. There are some zoos with good conditions to protect animals, sometimes they live here better than living alone in the middle of nature. However, there are zoos where animals can only stay in small cages or they are beaten, tamed to serve visitors. They gradually lose their inherent instincts and only do what is taught. Worse still, there are places that are known as zoos but are actually places that trade and breed illegal animals. This is awful! So, I think that it is better for them to live in wildlife sanctuaries than in zoos. Not only live more free, it also protect them.

up
1 user has voted.
Yennhi's picture
1x
0x
Yennhi 21 June, 2020 - 04:15

I consider that keeping animals in zoos has both advantages and disadvantages. Firstly, people will keep an eye on their health and provide foods for their lives. However, we cant actually do sure that it makes animals comfortable , it's unnatural and makes them lonely. They do not adapt to the environment instantly, even die. So zoos are good or not depend on individual manager and human's awareness

up
1 user has voted.
thaoyen258's picture
1x
0x
thaoyen258 19 June, 2020 - 10:15

In my point of view, keeping animals in the zoo is a good way because it would be safer for animals and they won't be extinct. The amount of them dying by hunters or any other reason, still higher than the chances of their survival...Letting them loose and returning them to the wild is not necessarily a safe option. Zoo brings certain benefits like is the only place that we can have an opportunity to see animals life really close and sometimes we can touch them. Zoos also provide lots of information about certain animals, children can have chance to get out of the classroom and learn so they can see natural beauty from different species of animals. In conclusion, I fully support keeping animals in the zoo

up
1 user has voted.
Trinh123's picture
0x
0x
Trinh123 18 June, 2020 - 15:02

In my opinion, It is cruel to keep animals in the zoo. If people always want the needs for freedom and happiness, so do animals. Today, to attract tourists, most animals in the zoo are beaten and forced to do things that they do not want. That is very cruel. Although some zoos provide a safe environment for animals, I think we should release them into the natural environment, so that they exist according to the laws of nature.

up
0 users have voted.
thuchien's picture
1x
0x
thuchien 18 June, 2020 - 02:12

I think zoos are a good and bad thing. Firstly, animals which live in zoos are protected, so they live without any risk of being attacked. Secondly, they are fed and checked regularly so the incidence will be low. However, living in zoos can make them lose some of their natural instincts and abilities. The animals have limited choice in habitats and mates.

up
0 users have voted.
HamyNguyen10's picture
0x
0x
HamyNguyen10 16 April, 2020 - 04:56

Well! Do you believe that zoo are completely cruel to animals? I consider that keeping animals in zoo has both advantages and disavantages. First of all, people will keep an eye on their health and provide food also water for their lives. Furthermore, People can watch the way animals live and behave even educate them for intelligent reply. However, we can't actually do sure that it makes animals comfortable. Obviously, it's unnatural and perhap make them lonely and not adapt to the environment instantly even die.So, zoo are good or not?it depends on individual manages and human's awareness.

up
0 users have voted.
Giovannichoi's picture
67x
10x
Giovannichoi 27 March, 2020 - 07:20

I used to enjoy going to a zoo when I was young, but I agree with the opponent side. Because even though the animals were released, those can't be adjust with the wild or their own habitate. Also, the cages and the aquariums in zoo are very small for them, so those will be stressed more and fight with themselves for the places. There was a fact that the noises of the tourists (or else) make animals to die earlier than their averaged age. The best thing to do for the enclosure animals is don't make any more zoos. In my opinion, I think it's better to make shelter or conservation place or nature preserve for the wild animals like DMZ in Korea. Artificial environment cannot be compared with real wild. So, I think trying to preserve the nature well for the endangered species' breed is the most important thing

up
2 users have voted.
pidixtoulis's picture
2x
0x
pidixtoulis 16 March, 2020 - 15:55

I believe that there are some advantages and some disadvantages on this issue, because zoo is made for people's entertainment, but animals may not find this entertaining

up
2 users have voted.
Elife's picture
17x
-1x
Elife 11 February, 2020 - 23:08

In my opinion, the zoos is good things and cruel to keep animals in captivity. This depends on the responsibility with zoos, some help animals and give a better lifestyle, and others do not.

up
0 users have voted.
nguyenthao0808's picture
2x
0x
nguyenthao0808 30 October, 2019 - 09:42

In the nature, Many animals live together. There are some animals that can have freedom and enjoy the nature, But some of them are not. For example, A giraffe that has long neck can eat leaves and be full, But a giraffe that has short neck can't eat foods and can't survive. There are many situations like this in nature. These animals like giraffes that I told you before need our help, And zoos are helping help them. So I think zoos are good for animals.

up
1 user has voted.
nidia's picture
0x
0x
nidia 27 August, 2019 - 14:46

On the other hand, there are some zoos that treat well the animals they care for and give them good care, those are the ones that have values and give a good service to the care of the animals, which is why they are considered a society that protects animals.

up
0 users have voted.
nidia's picture
0x
0x
nidia 27 August, 2019 - 14:00

I think that the creation of zoo was a bad idea, because it is to lock animals away from their natural habitat, stresses them and causes them discomfort, so the only one who benefits is the one who manages the business, from the suffering of the animals.

up
0 users have voted.
nidia's picture
0x
0x
nidia 27 August, 2019 - 13:42

I consider the article very good, because it does not talk about the care of animals .It describes it in a very detiled way and about the care given to animals endangered .In this way he gives us to undestand his point of view and the reflection that he presents.

up
0 users have voted.
Ales144's picture
0x
0x
Ales144 27 August, 2019 - 03:02

I think that zoos have good things and bad things but the importance of those type of model is in the responsibility because of one-way zoos helps animals and gave a better lifestyle, but when the zoo is irresponsible is very bad for the animals and we have to save them, so I think that the most important to have a zoo is the conscience of those lives and be empathetic with all around us.

up
0 users have voted.

Pages