Our Day at Pata Zoo in Bangkok, Thailand
During our many months in Thailand, Cody and I have seen heartbreakingly miserable orangutans, tigers chained so close to the ground that they couldn’t stand; crocodile meat, crocodile hand bags, and a crocodile show within footsteps of each other, a baby elephant being kicked, racing pigs with numbers spray painted on their backs, bunny rabbits with festering wounds, and too much more to mention.
Unfortunately Pata Zoo is another place we came across with a lot of animal suffering.
The Pata department store is a decrepit building in the middle of a local area of busy Bangkok.
On the top two floors of the building is Pata Zoo with over two hundred species of wild animals.
They live in stinking concrete enclosures obsessively pacing back and forth all day.
The proper term for this behaviour is called zoochosis; an obsessive repetitive movement that is caused by being held captive and not having natural needs met. Other behaviours we witnessed were bar biting and licking, rocking back and forth, and circling.
We took our time at Pata Zoo to properly assess the dire situation for every animal and here is just a small portion of what we witnessed.
Bua Noi, one of the many prisoner’s of Pata Zoo, is a mountain gorilla who should be living her life freely with her family in the jungles of Africa, but instead she sits alone rolling back and forth, pacing from one side of her cage to another.
I can’t even begin to imagine her anguish.
Humbolt the penguin-the last surviving member of a group of twelve penguins, either stands inside a small concrete box facing the wall, or sleeps in the same box.
Instead of calling beautiful islands and caves along the pacific coast of South America home, his existence is reduced to being put on display in an air conditioned room at Pata Zoo.
We also came across turtles in filthy water, rabbits panting in the heat, beautiful tropical birds with very little room to fly, and dead snakes and lizards.
But what caused me to lose my composure, was a mother Orangutan and her baby boy.
As soon as I approached her she crawled over and looked at me with eyes so full of self awareness and sadness that I couldn’t help but cry.
I quickly put myself back together and spent more time with her and her baby who wasn’t quite yet aware that this was his fate.
We’re sure there will be some people who still agree with certain zoos and the conservation work they do, but the truth is, 99% of animals being held in zoos are not endangered.
These are animals who have their freedom and nature taken away (everything that makes their lives meaningful) so humans can get their selfie with a funny Orangutan in a tshirt, or knock on the window as a polar bear swims by for the 100th time.
Like in most countries; animals are seen as objects, property to possess, and money making machines.
They are not seen as sentient beings who feel, suffer, stress, love, think, and desire to be free as much as you and I.
In our eyes this is a crime.
The time has come to recognize the rights of all sentient beings, and stop taking what does not belong to us.
We must strike at the roots of cruelty.
This is a call to anyone who cares about the world we live in and every single inhabitant on it.
If this stirs any emotion in you, please stand up and make an effort to raise awareness.
We all must count on each other to make and be the change that we so badly need in this world.
If you are reading this right now, we hope that it will open your eyes, and in turn you will share this with others who may want to ride an elephant, pay for a monkey show, or eat/use an animal for any reason.
People need to come to this realization in order for things to truly change. We need to stop thinking “me” and start thinking “we”
Zoos, circus’, elephant shows, breeding, aquariums, horseback riding, meat, dairy, leather.
Please stop contributing to all forms of animal exploitation.
“Compassion, in which all ethics must take route, can only attain its full breadth and depth if it embraces all living creatures and does not limit itself to mankind”