For Immediate Release:
March 29, 2023
David Perle 202-483-7382
Dallas – Monkey-shaped vegan chocolates are on the way from PETA to locally based restaurant chain Chili’s after the company confirmed to the group that it is no longer using children’s activity placemats that promote keeping parrots and monkeys as “pets.” The news follo ws a complaint over one of the placemats being used at a Chili’s location in Scottsbluff, Nebraska. It was first reported to the North American Primate Sanctuary Alliance, which collaborated with PETA to bring this issue to the attention of the restaurant franchise.
“Encouraging people to keep wild animals as ‘pets’ or playthings misleads the public and helps line the pockets of seedy wildlife dealers who tear animals away from their families,” says PETA Foundation Director of Captive Animal Welfare Debbie Metzler. “PETA commends Chili’s for scrapping this outdated language from its placemats for young children, who are still learning right from wrong.”
PETA points out that parrots are highly intelligent and need adequate mental stimulation throughout the day but that they and other birds kept as caged “pets” are denied the opportunity to satisfy their essential needs to fly and live in family groups. When confined to cramped cages, they scream and often mutilate themselves, plucking out their feathers to the point of causing bloody sores, in an attempt to relieve their mental anguish.
Monkeys in the pet trade are sold as infants by unscrupulous animal breeders and dealers, who take babies away from their mothers prematurely. These primates are intelligent, curious, and social animals with complex physical and psychological needs that cannot be met in human homes. Monkeys are also unpredictable and powerful and, after biting or attacking humans, often end up dumped by overwhelmed owners or even killed by authorities.
PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to use for entertainment”—opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview. For more information, please visit PETA.org, listen to The PETA Podcast, or follow the group on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram.