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Cruel Treatment of Bears in Suzhou Sparks Outrage

Chen Xiaoli

Program Code: 0909346160818022 Source: Tencent

The cruelty suffered by bears in the circus in Suzhou, Anhui Province, has sparked great anger on social media.

A series of photos and videos were published by the animal rights group PETA Asia recently. According to the organization, a PETA Asia investigator visited 10 of the more than 300 circuses and animal-training facilities in Suzhou and was horrified by what was seen.

Bear cubs are chained or tethered to a wall and forced to remain upright, sometimes for hours, to train them to walk on their hind legs. 

Some are even tethered upright inside cages.

Some bear cubs were also tied to a hook in the ground by a short rope, making it impossible to move more than a few inches in any direction.

Bears were also forced to jump over objects, walk on their hands, and perform other tricks that confused them. They cried and screamed during their training sessions. 

They repeatedly tried to resist, but trainers yanked on their neck ropes, dragged them and forced them to continue. If they made a mistake, they were beaten with a stick.

They cried out, pawing and biting at the bars, desperate to escape.

The snouts of some of the bears are pierced with metal rings, often without painkillers. 

PETA Asia called on people not to support animal circuses or any animal performances so as to better protect the bears and other animals.

Online viewers reacted with anger:

"Stop this ignorant barbaric culture!"
"Can't watch, but would never go to an animal circus."
"This is too sad, I don't go to the circus."
"Can't imagine the cruelty it look to get this baby bear to do this. Please stop going to a circus that has large animals whose home is in the wild."
“Sickening. I've never been and would never go to a circus. Just so wrong on every level."
"Oh no. My heart is broken. Apart from stopping going to a circus, what else I can do to help the bears? I am so sorry little bears."
"This is so disturbing. I wish I could buy these circuses and set these animals free back to the wild. Poor baby bears."


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