PETA Statement on Exotic Cats Owned by Dirk Arthur

For Immediate Release:
October 16, 2023

David Perle 202-483-7382

Las Vegas – Below, please find a statement from PETA Foundation Director of Captive Animal Welfare Debbie Metzler in response to the reported death of Las Vegas performer Dirk Arthur:

Magic acts with exploited wild cats disappeared from the Strip years ago, and PETA is calling for any exotic cats who survived Dirk Arthur to be sent to accredited sanctuaries where they’ll have space to roam, opportunities to swim and climb, and freedom from stage lights and filthy cages at last.

Photos of a 2014 PETA protest against Arthur’s show at the Riviera Hotel and Casino are available here.

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to use for entertainment”—opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview. For more information on PETA’s investigative newsgathering and reporting, please visit, listen to The PETA Podcast, or follow the group on X (formerly Twitter), Facebook, or Instagram.

For Media: Contact PETA's
Media Response Team.


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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