Quantcast
Environmental News for a Healthier Planet and Life

Animal Rights Groups Slam 'Inhumane' Bear Stunt at Russian Soccer Match

Animals

Animal rights organizations expressed outrage after footage emerged of a trained bear named Tima performing ahead of a soccer match on Saturday between third-tier Russian teams Mashuk-KMV and Angusht.

The clip shows a muzzled bear led to the stadium by a handler. It lifts its arms up and down, gets on its hind legs and hands a soccer ball to the referee. It then makes clapping motions in front of the cheering crowd.


Animal rights groups condemned the display.

"It's clear that cruel training methods have been used to make this bear submissive enough to perform on command. All too often, wild animals used for entertainment are taken from their mothers at a young age, crammed into tiny cages or chained for long periods while they wait for their next performance. This is a far cry from their natural lives in the wild," Cassandra Koenen, head of wildlife campaigns at World Animal Protection, told EcoWatch in a statement.

"Bears, like most wild animals, are highly unpredictable and people around the world have been mauled or attacked by these animals, underlining that show business is no career for a wild animal."

PETA UK director Elisa Allen also described the act as "inhumane."

"In addition to being inhumane and utterly out of touch, using a bear as a captive servant to deliver a football is downright dangerous," Allen said.

"The bear is the symbol of Russia, so we hope the country's people will show some compassion and national pride and stop abusing them. Common decency should compel the league to pull this stunt."

The stadium's announcer said the bear will participate in FIFA World Cup's opening ceremony in Moscow in June. However, organizers later told Standard Sports that no animals will be used as part of the ceremonies.

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

Solar panel installations and a wind turbine at the Phu Lac wind farm in southern Vietnam's Binh Thuan province on April 23, 2019. MANAN VATSYAYANA / AFP via Getty Images

Renewable energy made up almost three quarters of all new energy capacity added in 2019, data released Monday by the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) shows.

Read More Show Less
The buildings of downtown Los Angeles are partially obscured at midday on November 5, 2019 as seen from Pasadena, California. Mario Tama / Getty Images.

By Ajit Niranjan

Two main risk factors are currently known to raise the chance of dying from the novel coronavirus that has brought the world to a halt: being old and having a weak immune system.

Air pollution makes the second of those more likely.

Read More Show Less
Sponsored
Hospital workers applaud during a tribute to the essential health care workers at Hospital Universitario de Mostoles in Mostoles, Spain on March 27, 2020. Legan P. Mace / SOPA Images / LightRocket via Getty Images

By Jennifer Cheavens and David Cregg

The world is currently in the midst of a pandemic where the most useful thing many of us can do is stay at home and keep away from others. Schools, restaurants, office buildings and movie theaters are closed. Many people are feeling disoriented, disconnected and scared.

Read More Show Less
Essential farm workers continue to work as Florida agriculture industry struggles during coronavirus pandemic. Joe Raedle / Getty Images.

By Liz Carlisle

This opinion piece was originally published by Yes! Magazine on March 30, 2020.

As the coronavirus crisis has laid bare, the U.S. urgently needs a strategic plan for farmland. The very lands we need to ensure community food security and resilience in the face of crises like this pandemic and climate change are currently being paved over, planted to chemically raised feed grains for factory farm animals, and acquired by institutional investors and speculators. For far too long, the fate of farmlands has flown under the radar of public dialogue—but a powerful new proposal from think tank Data for Progress lays out how a national strategic plan for farmland could help boost economic recovery while putting the U.S. on a path to carbon neutrality.

Read More Show Less
A worker with nonprofit organization Martha's Table loads bags of fresh produce to distribute to people in need during the novel coronavirus outbreak on April 1, 2020 in Washington, DC. Chip Somodevilla / Getty Images

By Shawn Radcliffe

The CDC recommends that all people wear cloth face masks in public places where it's difficult to maintain a 6-foot distance from others. This will help slow the spread of the virus from people without symptoms or people who do not know they have contracted the virus. Cloth face masks should be worn while continuing to practice social distancing. Instructions for making masks at home can be found here. Note: It's critical to reserve surgical masks and N95 respirators for healthcare workers.

Read More Show Less