If You Love Dolphins, Don’t Ever Pay to Swim With Them

Most people have good intentions when they go on excursions or visit parks that allow you to swim with dolphins. But if they knew the truth behind the deceptive dolphin smile, they’d be horrified to know what they were actually supporting.


Sometimes, dolphins are illegally captured and sold to parks around the world.

Many of the dolphins who are deemed less “attractive”—and, therefore, less profitable—are slaughtered during the capture process and sold as meat to unsuspecting consumers.

Dolphin-SlaughterCourtesy of Sea Shepherd Conservation Society

Dolphins are torn away from their families in the wild—even babies, who typically stay with their mothers for three to six years.

In the wild, dolphins swim up to 60 miles each day, but in captivity, they’re confined to chemically treated concrete pools. This is especially traumatic for them since they communicate through sonar.

Wild Dolphin

Captive dolphins are often housed in incompatible groups, and because of the cramped conditions of their enclosures, they’re unable to escape conflicts.


Many dolphins develop painful conditions, such as stomach ulcers, and some die prematurely from the stressful conditions of captivity.

Many illnesses can be passed from dolphins to human visitors, including viral, fungal, and bacterial infections such as salmonella. People have also been bitten and sustained broken bones during their swimming sessions.


Learn more about the marine-mammal captivity industry and the true cost that dolphins pay. Never visit or attend marine parks or participate in swim-with-dolphins programs.

Want to help dolphins? Share this page now!

Facebook Logotwitter-bird-white-on-blue

Get PETA Updates

Stay up to date on the latest vegan trends and get breaking animal rights news delivered straight to your inbox!

By submitting this form, you are agreeing to our collection, storage, use, and disclosure of your personal info in accordance with our privacy policy as well as to receiving e-mails from us.

 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