Should the use of animals for human entertainment be banned? Discuss. Animals have been used for entertainment purposes in both the past and present. Advocates of their continual use state that the existence of educational value and specific breeding for the purposes of sporting activities they partake are valid arguments against the proposed banning. However, the presence of desensitization during the course of training, the potential for generating stressors in artificial environments, as well as cases of animal abuse, present compelling arguments for banning of animals for human entertainment. The observation of animals within zoological parks that would otherwise not be possible to the general public is one of the key reasons against the ban. Establishments such as Seaworld provide visitors with the opportunity to interact with animals, gaining not only entertainment but also knowledge regarding the animals present. Zoological parks also generates awareness of the environment, especially animal habitats, thereby teaching the public the importance of conservation. Another argument against the proposed ban is the fact that many animals are bred specifically for the purposes of various sporting activities, which in turn enhances their well being.
Horses used in horse racing, for example, are thoroughbreds whose trainers constantly monitor the overall health of the animal. Such attention and care relates to both physical and mental state of the animal, which in turn ensures that they can perform at their maximum. However, various counter-arguments that support the ban also exists. The generation of negative stimuli experienced by animals, most often triggered by being at the centre of attention during public shows, is one such argument. Many distractions exist for animals used in entertainment; ranging from audience applauds, bright lights and even loud music.
Though desensitization against such stimuli is possible, the adaptation process is often stressful for the affected animal, which demands the removal of their natural behaviour.Forceful alteration of animal behaviour is not only present during desensitization processes, but more noticeably in the training of animals to perform tricks. This is most evident in circuses where animals are coerced to ride bikes and jump through hoops for the purposes of entertaining paying customers. Other than the stress brought about by such performances the possibility of punishment for unsatisfactory acts also exist.