You may have known about the cruel and ill treatments animals trained for entertainment often receive; the small and crowded cages, filthy environment, physical punishment and all. Banishing animal entertainment industry for good would take so much time and effort. Even international organizations like PETA and WWF are still working towards it. But as a mere citizen of the world, you are not completely excluded from rescuing these animals and preventing more animals from being captured. You can simply do so by not taking part in enjoying animal entertainments.
The major reason animal entertainment remains a multi-billion dollar industry is because the demand is strong. In Thailand, according to a 2017 report by World Animal Protection, there was a 30% increase in elephant entertainment venues; circus, bathing or riding with elephants. Around 40% of foreign tourists said that when they’re visiting Thailand, they had been planning for an elephant ride experience. In other words, this demanded about 12.8 million elephant rides in the country. The number is related to the rising foreign visitors to Thailand. According to data released by the Tourism Ministry, there were an estimated 32.6 million foreign tourists coming to Thailand in 2016; a raise of nearly 9% from 2015. The rise has also brought in $45.9 billion or about 13% raise from 2015.
Those are only the numbers in Thailand. Almost every country in the world has a form of animal entertainment, be it circus, animal drawn carriages, animal rides, zoos, aquariums and so on. Imagine how much revenue will be lost if animal entertainment stop, even for the sake of compassion towards animals.
However, as the target consumers, we can put a stop to this by decreasing the demand. An industry is only profitable when there is a demand. Luckily, demand is on our side.