Video: Heavily Drugged Lion Used as Photo Prop in Indonesian Safari Park

Posted on by Nirali Shah

Update: PETA U.S. contacted Canon about a chair that can be seen in the background of the video (shown below) with the company’s logo on it. Canon confirmed that “no Canon Group company operates in Indonesia and that the Company has no relationship with Taman Safari Indonesia.” Canon has requested that its distributor end its contract with the Taman Safari.

In a shocking scene captured on camera, an extremely “sleepy” young lion is forcibly propped up as tourists pose for their holiday snaps at Taman Safari park.

As the clearly sedated cub drowsily tries to lay his head down, a park worker can be seen aggressively pushing the lion’s head up, while visitors drape their arms over him and say “cheese” for the camera.

Singa yang sedang mengantuk dipaksa bangun untuk foto bersama …This place is Taman Safari Indonesia, Bogor: Sleepy lion being forced to get up to take pictures with visitors. The lion is looking drugged? Shame on You Taman Safari Indonesia Singa yang sedang mengantuk dipaksa bangun untuk berfoto bersama pengunjung. Singa ini terlihat seperti dibius. Seperti inikah cara Taman Safari Indonesia mendapatkan uang? Kejam

Posted by Scorpion Wildlife Trade Monitoring Group on Tuesday, 5 April 2016

Wild animals used as photo props are often ripped from their mothers shortly after birth and subjected to extreme stress, and some are even physically abused, as money-hungry animal exhibitors force them to pose with smiling tourists. Once the animals are no longer babies and become too large and dangerous to pose for pictures, they typically end up being locked away in cages.

While unsettling, scenes like this are not uncommon. All over Asia, zoos, safari parks, and self-claimed “sanctuaries” charge for photo ops or up-close interactions with animals who belong in the wild, just so that the facilities can line their pockets. For example, tigers in Thailand’s Tiger Temple are heavily sedated, beaten, and chained for hours every day in the scorching sun as a constant stream of tourists pay to pose for photos—all so that the “sanctuary” can make a buck.

Update: 137 tigers have been rescued by Thailand’s Department of National Parks and transferred to animal refuges within the country. Tiger Temple is currently closed.

What You Can Do

Please pledge never to visit any place that profits from live animals. Financially supporting animal acts like this Indonesian park ensures continued cruelty to animals.

Always make sure that you’re visiting a reputable sanctuary, and urge friends and family to leave cruel tourist traps off their vacation itineraries.

Remember: Animals are not our selfie props. If there’s any risk that your photo is going to hurt or cause stress to an animal, it’s not worth it.