New Alec Baldwin Video Calls On Parents to Shun Baby Bear-Cub Petting at Michigan Roadside Zoo

For Immediate Release:
July 8, 2022

Contact:
Robin Goist 202-483-7382

Newberry, Mich. – With summer tourism season underway, today PETA is releasing a video narrated by Alec Baldwin exposing the suffering of baby bears used in paid cub-petting “encounters” and appealing to families never to patronize any operation that tears cubs away from their mothers and treats them as photo props— which is what local roadside zoo Oswald’s Bear Ranch does.

“These events are part of an industry dependent on destroying families,” Baldwin explains. “Each cub is an infant who writhes and cries when torn from their adoring mother and denied that crucial bond.”

The new video shows exactly that.

More than a dozen cubs have died on Oswald’s watch. Two of them—Peanut and Pink String—died last year when they were only a few months old. Oswald’s regularly misleads the public by marketing itself as a rescue facility even though it has bred 13 cubs in the past 24 years and purchased or acquired 77 others from known shady dealers, including at least a dozen in the past four years alone, for use in photo ops. Once the bears become too big to be used for photos, Oswald’s moves them to enclosures where video footage has shown them pacing and swaying their heads back and forth, behavior that is a sign of mental distress in bears.

Other offenders include Yellowstone Bear World in Rexburg, Idaho—where bear cubs have been observed crying, struggling to escape being passed around like toys, and lying limp with apparent exhaustion and from overheating—and Cherokee Bear Zoo in Cherokee, North Carolina, where pacing and whimpering bears are held in desolate concrete pits and cramped cages.

“My family won’t visit any facility that tears bear cubs from their mothers for entertainment,” concludes Baldwin. “Please … ask your families to boycott these facilities, too.”

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 or follow the group on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram.

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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