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How to Plan Your (Humane) Vacation

The following article originally appeared on PETA Prime.

Summer is just around the corner and vacations are being planned. There are so many exciting places that it’s hard to decide where to go. Because there are many choices when making summer plans, I hope that you will join me in not patronizing any entertainment businesses that use animals, including zoos, circuses, marine parks, rodeos, and any other places where animals suffer for the sake of people’s entertainment.

Animals who are abused in the name of “entertainment” suffer needlessly for our momentary “amusement.” They often spend years languishing in cages or water tanks that are too small for them. Their days and nights pass in loneliness and fear, and often, they are only taken out of their small enclosures to entertain the money-paying public for an hour or so. The animals are then locked away until their next performance—sometimes without adequate food or medical care and most assuredly without any compassion or friendship.

Animals in captivity show us little of the true behavior that they would normally exhibit in their natural habitat, such as raising a family, exploring, or foraging for food. If we look beyond the glitzy shows that involve forced performances by terrified animals, captive animals can only show us the loneliness, frustration, and boredom that they experience day in and day out for the entirety of their miserable lives.

I believe that animals deserve to enjoy every bit of comfort and freedom that humans do. I am looking forward to the day when there are no cages. What better way to teach our children compassion for other beings than to give those beings the life that they were intended to live—having the sun on their backs, their young by their sides, and the freedom to roam as they please.

So when you plan your summer vacation this year, focus your attention on animal-friendly pursuits, such as hiking in the woods and enjoying the mammals, birds, and insects in their natural habitats. Or go to the beach and try snorkeling in order to see all those wonderful sea creatures up close in their native homes. How about spending some time at an animal sanctuary or animal shelter and volunteering to help animals who are in need of kindness and love? Perhaps your idea of fun is visiting your favorite big city that is filled with new vegan restaurants to try.

There are so many forms of entertainment that we can choose from for our summertime fun that don’t involve exploiting animals. Please make the kind choice and choose an animal-friendly vacation for yourself and your family. PETA publishes a list of places to definitely avoid, so that’s a great place to start.

You will feel great knowing that you did not contribute to any animal suffering during your vacation fun.

Do you have any animal-friendly vacation ideas?

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  • krista says:

    Woodstock Farm Animal Sanctuary is similar to The Gentle Barn, but in New York. They also have a bed and breakfast on the property! A wonderful place!

  • chander kumar soni says:

    so romantic.

  • Jenny Karaboiki says:

    Thank you PETA for this article. I am very against animal exploitation for human entertainment, but my sole voice cannot convince our human centered society.

  • jc says:

    I recently became vegan, and since I learn of the cruelty to animals, in circus, I have manage to convince family members to stop going to them. Animals have feelings too.

  • TexasMeg Torelli says:

    Great topic. :)

  • chander kumar soni says:

    i love you peta.

  • Tammy Karaba says:

    I have been trying to get away for a day (Sundays) to go visit all at the following places :

    The Gentle Barn – 15825 Sierra HWY, Santa Clarita, CA 91390. http://www.gentlebarn.org I checked out their website and they rescue animals who become a permanent part of the Gentle Barn family. The animals act as ambassadors helping abused children thru interaction programs on site. You can visit Gentle Barn on Sundays. (VERY VEGAN) Go to website for more information.

    Animal Acres – 5200 Escondido Cyn Rd., Acton, CA 93510 – (661) 269-5404. http://www.animalacres.com This place rescues animals from farm factories and finds homes for them. They have tours on Sunday’s. (VERY VEGAN)

    If anyone ends up going please let me know what you think by sending me an email! I am sure I will love it I just need to get there!

    Tammy

  • Cassie says:

    The few times in my life I’ve been to a circus, I’ve been horrified at the treatment of the animals. As an adult, I refuse to go to them. There are many other ways to have fun without subjecting yourself and animals to such an act. Hiking, Biking, Picnicking, and Sightseeing are all wonderful ways to enjoy animals without abusing them. :)

  • Lynn Anderson says:

    Thank you Peta for helping people go from empty-hearted to full-hearted, especially while on vacation. Great idea.

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