DogDaze by Kathy Moran (The Philippine Star)

It is sad that the Bureau of Animal Industry (BAI) granted an animal welfare permit to the traveling dolphin show, which is set to perform in Araneta Center soon. 

In reaction to this, conservationists and animal welfare groups led by PAWS and Earth Island Institute picketed the BAI office in Visayas Avenue, Quezon City, last Dec. 7.

A dolphin show or any traveling show with animals is not good for the animals. Often the animals are made to live under harsh conditions so that they can perform for the crowds that come out to watch.

It is cruel and truly sad.

Here are a few reasons why the upcoming dolphin show should not be watched:

1. Dolphins in traveling dolphin shows are miserable. They swim in small tanks the whole day instead of swimming for thousands of miles like they were meant to.

2. These dolphins have been separated from their families. Don’t let the bred-in-captivity reason fool you. Dr. Naomi Rose, senior scientist for the Humane Society International in her essay “The Myth of Good Marine Parks,” says, “ .. there’s the pesky fact that, despite an active breeding program, a substantial proportion of the dolphins in these facilities were nevertheless captured from the wild. They were caught either in US waters (where the law permits captures under certain circumstances, although none have occurred since 1993) or in foreign waters (the dolphins are typically imported from overseas marine parks which have actually performed the dirty work).

“The cruel and indifferent exploitation of wild dolphins we have been witnessing in the Solomon Islands is the direct consequence of the well-meaning visitor at a (US) dolphin show buying his or her admission ticket. There is a clear line connecting the two. The only way to break the connection is to stop buying the tickets. Don’t provide the incentive, however remote it may seem to you, for dolphin captures half a world away.”

3. Chlorine in the dolphin pool is not good for the health of the dolphins and eventually blinds them. The funny thing is that the dolphin show organizers deny that there is chlorine in their pools and that they use seawater.

PAWS provided me photos of the pool of the dolphin shows held in 2006 and 2007. The color of the water in those photos is the same blue as that of a commercial hotel pool and it clearly tells us that that is chlorinated water.  Seawater does not look like that when placed in a small pool.

If you love dolphins, don’t watch the dolphin show.