Cruelty to Reindeer?
Monday, 13 December 2010 18:28
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In recent weeks, there has been quite a number of stories (in the english language media)  that feature reindeer being ‘mistreated’, coupled with news releases, video and protest letters. These protests have focussed on the treatment of reindeer by reindeer herders who depend on reindeer for their livelihoods and have been practicing the livelihood for [...]

Reindeer were brought into the famous London toy shop 'Hamleys' this christmas. Photo: Darren Hector http://www.wildlifephotography.tv/the-saddest-pictures-ive-ever-taken/

In recent weeks, there has been quite a number of stories (in the english language media)  that feature reindeer being ‘mistreated’, coupled with news releases, video and protest letters. These protests have focussed on the treatment of reindeer by reindeer herders who depend on reindeer for their livelihoods and have been practicing the livelihood for millenia. This has become an annual event, as there is no time to tug on the heartstrings of potential donors than christmas, a celebration that has in the last century, again primarily in the english speaking world, become indelibly linked with reindeer (See story on the creation of this connection here on the Reindeer Portal).

These media driven events drop off the radar in January. However, those concerned about the mistreatment of reindeer might do well to take a lok at their own back yard. There are no figures for the number of reindeer that are being housed in the US and UK that are kept for the entertaining of the public, like circus acts dragged out for display. Reindeer are being housed  in an art gallery in Berlin, on a garage in Rovaniemi, Finland, running loose in strawberry fields in Santa Monica, California and even housed in London’s most famous  toy shop (albeit briefly, after protests about live penguins being on display got peoples’ attention). Numerous reineder parades are held across Britain these days – and their welfare is suffering.

These animals have been removed from their herd, forced to live with perhaps only one or two other reindeer, are housed in highly artificial and restricted conditions, and have to live in moist temperate climates outside the natural habitat in which they thrive.  So far, there have not been any major media campaigns by animal rights organisations to eliminate what is an obvious form of cruelty to reindeer, presumably it being deemed easier to target peoples far away about whose lives little is known.

Reindeer for Entertainment. Source: Animal Dramatics UK


Posted: 2010-12-13 17:28:18

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