Animal circus cruelty continues

It’s February and circus season has begun once more, which means that animals have already started to be transported around the UK to perform for crowds. These animals will endure daily suffering as they live in unnatural environments and cramped conditions, with limited freedom to express their natural behaviours.

They’ll be forced to perform tricks for noisy crowds, and once that leg of the tour is complete, they’ll be put into trailers to be driven sometimes hundreds of miles to the next show location.

This is cruelty that Freedom For Animals (formerly Captive Animals’ Protection Society) was founded to in 1957 to oppose. Our founder, the late Irene Heaton, was appalled by the suffering endured by animals in zoos and circuses, and made it her aim to bring about change for animals.

Unfortunately the fight for animals’ freedom from circuses is still raging on today. Whenever we post on social media about animal circuses, we always receive comments from supporters who thought they were banned long ago! While many countries worldwide HAVE committed to banning animal circuses, the UK still has a way to go.  

You can take action to end circuses here! End animal circuses

A UK and Ireland ban on animals in circuses – how close is it?

The Republic of Ireland banned wild animals in circuses in January 2018, and Scotland followed in May with their own ban on wild animals in circuses. While this is brilliant news in itself, domestic animals such as horses and dogs are still allowed to be kept in travelling circuses. We must not forget them, and must keep the pressure on to ensure that ALL animal circuses are banned!

Wales announced their intention to ban wild animals in circuses last year too, but there is still work to be done to ensure that legislation is brought in sooner rather than later. 

While Northern Ireland have indicated that they would like to take a similar approach to the Republic in their stance on animal circuses, we are yet to see any developments in this area. This is where you come in! See our actions below.

In 2013, the Government promised a ban on wild animals in circuses in England. With 94.5% of people answering a public consultation in favour of a ban, it is clear that this is what the public wants. A licensing scheme was introduced in 2013 which has so far, done very little to protect the animals exploited in circuses. In February 2018, when that system was reviewed, the Conservative Party stated that they will ban wild animals in circuses by 2020. So hopefully, this will be the year for a ban on wild animals in circuses in England. It’s now more important than ever that we keep up the pressure.

Order leaflets to hold a protest like this one

How can you help?

There are lots of things you can do to help get these bans in place.

1) Protest outside a circus
Is a circus coming to your town? We can provide free materials for you to distribute at protests and demos. Peaceful protests have proved very successful in the past with activists seeing potential circus patrons turning away after talking to them about the suffering animals endure in circuses.

2) Report circuses to us
Have you seen posters up in shop windows, or posts on social media about a circus coming to your town? Take a picture and send them to us! We take note of these so that we can keep track and help members of the public coordinate protests in the area.

3) Write to your Government representative
It’s more important than ever to keep the pressure on your local MP. We need to make sure that the ban is a priority, particularly in England where the promises have been left to gather dust for too long. You can take action here: End animal circuses