Today the documentary Blood Lions gets release and to coincide with that, travel bloggers from all over South Africa decided to put their voices together to call for #AnimalRightsInTourism. Blood Lions put the focus on the canned hunting industry which has direct links with places offering lion cub interaction. Does people who get to play with lion cubs realise where that cute little cub goes when he is all grown up? Probably into a small fenced enclosure and right into the sight of a trophy hunter. The cute little cub doesn't stand a chance. He can't even try to get away. I'm not going to lie. I've petted cubs not thinking what will happen to them. I've rode on an elephant and you probably read it on one of my blog posts. One never thinks what those elephants went through to become the "obedient" animals they are today. Obedience or fear?
Not long ago I visited an Eastern Cape game reserve and one of the things our group did was to "walk" wild cheetahs. Not walk as in taking them for a stroll. Walk as in approach them on foot but staying a respectable and safe distance from them. Observing them in their natural environment and not intervening compared to walking them while they have leases on. Over the last few years my view on #AnimalRightsInTourism has changed drastically and I would rather see them in the wild than interact with them in captivity.