Free the Animals!

Traveling is not all glorious and beautiful. There are some really ugly parts to Southeast Asia that I am not sure how to control or put and end to. A lot of illegal animal trade happens here and a lot of people use animals as tourist traps to make a quick buck. Most of these places have no regard for the lives of the animals involved. All they care about is the money.

We went to a little market near Kuala Selagnor at Bagan Lalang Beach. It is a popular beach for kite flying and there is a big tree with a bunch of ribbons tied to the top, which attracts a lot of tourists. Amongst all the food stalls and little shops was this gazebo packed with cages of different types of animals. The animals were all random, it gave the impression that they were just captured from the wild to display at the market. These animals had no bedding, food, or water. They are living in cages so small that they cannot stand up or turn around. There was a baby goose that pooped himself in his cage had to sit in it afterwards. There was a mouse next to him also with no bedding, food, or water.. running back and forth in a small plastic container.

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I also witnessed exotic birds placed on short wooden poles, with their wings clipped, being used to charge tourists for pictures. It started pouring down rain (heavy rain) and the man in charge of the “attraction” went for shade and left the birds in the rain without shelter.

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It is depressing because I do not know how to save them or free them. It is also depressing because people are unaware and uninformed when they travel. When you give into these displays you help keep these business alive. Look at how crowded this gazebo is!

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They are not going to stop anytime soon, even if I bought every single one of the animals and free’d them, they would just get more. This is still going to be part of the tourist industry unless we are better travelers.

There is always an inner battle I have with myself if I should say something or photograph the despicable businesses and educate people. I chose the latter, I believe my voice can stretch further by sharing evidence with my compassionate friends and followers and I hope you will share it as well. I want to stop animals being mistreated in Asia, and anywhere really, for tourism. It is bullshit. You can see the world, travel, and educate yourself, without harming other lives for your amusement.

Most of these animals will die in these cages because tourists are just passing through, no one can offer them a home.

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