(ACTIVISM/ANIMAL WELFARE) South Tyneside, England plans to include three camels in a Christmas celebration this year. Animal Defenders International (ADI) and Cruelty Free Christmas are voicing concern over the use of these animals for entertainment in the parade. Three wise men will ride on the camels during the Christmas Wonderland Procession, and stress from crowds, unfamiliar surroundings, and travel to/from the event could take their toll on the animals.

ADI likens the use of animals at public events like this one to circuses. They point out that even the camels’ trained caretakers have trouble sensing when the animals are too stressed or even injured. Read on for more on the opposition to the event and sign ADI’s petition to stop the cruel camel parade. — Global Animal

ADI and Cruelty Free Christmas are against the use of camels for entertainment. Photo Credit: shieldgazette.com
South Tyneside plans on including three camels in the Christmas Wonderland Procession this year. Photo Credit: shieldgazette.com (ANIMAL WELFARE)

ADI

Leading animal protection organization Animal Defenders International (ADI) is calling on South Tyneside Council not to exhibit camels at a controversial ‘Christmas Wonderland Procession’ in South Shields on December 6th.

The ‘Christmas Wonderland Procession’ is advertised on the South Tyneside Council website as being “led by three wise men on camels”.

The procession has already attracted controversy from local media and Cruelty Free Christmas, a campaign group which opposes animal performances during the Christmas period, which is planning to protest at the event.

ADI Chief Executive, Jan Creamer, “Camels are easily stressed and crowds, transport and unfamiliar environments compromise their welfare. When stressed or aggravated, camels can become very dangerous and have been known to lift children from the ground and injure them. South Tyneside is no place for camels and the camel parade at the ‘Christmas Wonderland Procession’ has no place in a compassionate society. We urge South Tyneside Council to cancel its cruel camel parade.” 

Camels are social animals used to living in large herds and have evolved to live in an arid environment. Camel experts have shown that the animals can become stressed from a number of sensory and psychological factors including unfamiliar surroundings and transportation.

Even well trained keepers can find it difficult to tell when these sensitive animals are stressed, ill or injured.

The use of camels at events raises a number of animal welfare and public safety concerns as camels can inflict fatal injuries due to their size, strength and aggressiveness.

Wild animals used for events suffer many of the same welfare issues as in circuses, which are widely condemned by the public.

A Defra public consultation on the use of wild animals in circuses showed the strength of public feeling on the use of wild animals in entertainment, with nearly all respondents calling for a ban on such performances. The use of wild animals in circus performances is set to be banned from 2015.

A petition calling on South Tyneside Council to stop the camel parade has received over 1,000 signatures – http://bit.ly/1bmnuah

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