Animal Sanctuaries And Rescues You Can Feel Good About Supporting
The Global Federation of Animal Sanctuaries (GFAS) is an organization that has rigorous standards of sanctuary management and lifelong animal care.
GFAS-accredited sanctuaries never breed animals or use them in commercial activities.
Some of the member sanctuaries provide educational tours, but not all of them do, so if you’re interested in visiting one with tours, make sure you check before you go.
Image: Go to GFAS accredited animal sanctuaries on your travels to avoid funding cruel animal tourist attractions. Source
Wasp International are a not-for-profit organisation dedicated to provide accurate information on ethical animal sanctuaries worldwide.
They provide a directory of animal sanctuaries all over the world that they consider to be ethical.
The charity Four Paws runs a number of bear rescue sanctuaries, which you can find here. The list includes their biggest Sanctuary, the Belitsa Sanctuary in Bulgaria, which has rescued many bears from being forced to dance for tourists and being kept in cruel conditions.
Here is a list of ethical animal sanctuaries in Thailand. They include elephant, gibbon, dog and other wildlife rescues and sanctuaries.
In addition to this list,
Elephant Nature Park – This park encourages an end to elephants being used for trekking, shows, and street performing.
Watching the elephants as you walk through the park is much like a safari. You are there to watch and learn about these fantastic animals, each with a unique (and most likely tragic) story of their own. Most of the animals had a past spent logging or performing for others after cruel and tortuous negative reinforcement methods and training based entirely on fear and breaking them down mentally. The bullying is relentless until they have no mental strength left to fight, so do so they avoid further pain.
Ethical parks such as this one offer day trips or longer volunteer stays. Other responsible elephant experiences in Thailand canbe found in places such as Boon Lott’s Elephant Sanctuary, Burm and Emily’s Elephant Sanctuary, and The Surin Project.
If you’re planning on attending another elephant attraction, be sure to check that riding is forbidden, and that no bull-hooks or other pain-inducing, or movement restrictive methods of handling or training are used. Also, make sure all elephants have access to shade and water. Responsible Travel have compiled a list of elephant sanctuaries which they do and do not support, along with their reasons.
Image: Website Responsible Travel lists elephant attractions they deem responsible and not. Source
Ingrid Newkirk, co-founder and president of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) recommends a few places in the US: Wild Animal Sanctuary in Colorado, Chimp Haven in Louisiana and Save the Chimps in Florida (chimps were rescued from roadside zoos), Poplar Spring in Maryland and Animal Place in California.
In this interview with The Washington Post, Ingrid gives tips about how to make sure your travel plans are kind to animals, which includes refusing to travel with Air France, who are the only remaining airline to transport primates for use in animal experimentation.
PeTA also work with Humane Travel, who not only provides customers with a great value, but are also dedicated to animal welfare. They provide comprehensive travel options and a charitable donation from virtually every booking. You can help a great cause by booking through them.
In the US and Canada, PeTA warns of a number of attractions to avoid, here, but also recommends non-cruel places you can visit, such as: The John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park, Key Largo, Florida. There, you can swim with animals on their terms, in their home; The Turtle Hospital, Marathon, Florida (Upper Keys). They rescue and rehabilitate turtles in trouble and releases all it responsibly can. You get to tour their centre and feed permanent residents.
A great website for finding ethical animal tourism destinations is Mindful Wanderlust. You can read personal accounts of destination experiences, and view photographs. Vegan Travel is another great site, and the same goes for Slow Vegan Travel.
Image: Find out how to travel ethically for animals and not fund cruel animal tourism. Source
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