MasterCard Says No to Animals in Captivity

Published by Michelle Kretzer.

One day. That’s how long it took MasterCard officials to end their promotion of a swim-with-dolphins program after PETA let them know just how inhumane these events are. They immediately removed it from their website—and that’s not all. They swiftly vowed never to support captive animal displays again.

Happy Dolphins in Ocean at Sunset©

MasterCard had been offering cardholders a dolphin-swim experience as part of its “Priceless Cities” program. PETA contacted company officials and let them know that dolphins in captivity often develop ulcers, exhibit neurotic behavior, and die prematurely because of the stress and deprivation of confinement. And many parks use dolphins who are captured during the annual Japanese dolphin slaughter.

We also reminded MasterCard that public opinion is strongly aligned against marine mammal captivity. Consumers have become more aware than ever of the suffering that wild animals endure when confined.

The company made the immediate decision to join dozens of other businesses, including HSBC and, in ending its endorsement of swim-with-dolphins experiences. And by refusing to endorse any captive animal displays, MasterCard is making a bold statement to other businesses: Customers understand that animals suffer in captivity, and they don’t want their dollars going to support it. PETA is sending MasterCard dolphin-shaped vegan chocolates as a thank-you for the swift, compassionate response.

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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind