Last year, more than 130 tigers from Tiger Temple in Kanchanaburi, Thailand, were seized and transferred to animal refuges around the country in response to global pressure to end wildlife trafficking. Officials also uncovered 40 dead cubs stored in a freezer on the premises.
With no tigers in the park, ticket sales have ceased—yet the temple is still open. Here’s what it looks like today:
Tigers at the temple spent almost every hour of their lives confined to barren concrete cells and were allowed out only to make money for the temple. Tourists paid for the fleeting experience of touching, hugging, or snapping a selfie with the heavily sedated wild animals, whose movements were restricted and who were reportedly beaten by the monks when they refused to cooperate.
What You Can Do
As long as tickets are sold by facilities that use animals for entertainment, living beings will continue to be trafficked, traded, and tortured. Please pledge never to visit any place that profits from live 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 ours to use for entertainment. If there’s any risk that your vacation experience is going to hurt or cause stress to a living being, it’s not worth it.