Target: Preecha Rengsomboonsuk, Minister of Natural Resources and Environment
Goal: Protect Thailand’s endangered tigers from a cruel fate in Tiger Temple, a popular tourist attraction.
The Wat Pha Luang Ta Bua Forest monastery in Thailand, commonly known as the Tiger Temple, is a popular tourist attraction that allows tourists to play with tigers. The concept behind Tiger Temple is that money from the tourists is spent on tiger care at the center and overall tiger conservation in Thailand. However, reports by animal welfare and conservation groups have exposed Tiger Temple as an abusive and exploitative moneymaking scheme. The tigers at Tiger Temple are not well cared for and the Minister of Natural Resources and Environment should take action in protecting Thailand’s rare tigers by shutting down Tiger Temple.
There have been many instances of abuse and neglect at Tiger Temple. Undercover investigators have noted that the tigers are confined for 20 hours a day in small, inadequate cages. They are not fed any red meat, causing them to develop many health problems. Every afternoon, the tigers are put on public display so that tourists can touch and pose with the animals for photographs. During these sessions, the tigers are given no shade and are exposed to three hours of direct sunlight in high temperatures. It has been observed that staff would drag the tigers into appealing photographic positions or beat them into submission. It is also likely that the tigers have been drugged, as they usually appear listless and lethargic.
Tiger Temple claims to breed its tigers for conservation. However, the center does not have a breeding license, even though at least 10 cubs have been born there. Rather than operating as a rescue center, this breeding facility may be involved in the illegal tiger trade. Undercover investigators noted that at least seven tigers disappeared from Tiger Temple within 2 years without explanation. Evidence was later found to show that Tiger Temple has connections with a tiger farm in Laos. The exchange or sale of tigers across international borders is illegal and prohibited under Thai law. There are currently 115 tigers at Tiger Temple. Sign the petition below to urge the Thai government to shut down Tiger Temple and prevent further mistreatment and exploitation of wild animals.
Dear Mr. Rengsomboonsuk,
I would like to bring to your attention the mistreatment of tigers at Wat Pha Luang Ta Bua Forest Monastery, or Tiger Temple. This center is a popular tourist attraction that allows tourists to play and pose with tigers for a fee. As the Minister of Natural Resources and Environment in Thailand, you may have heard of the cruel and abusive nature surrounding Tiger Temple. I would like to urge you to rescue the tigers at the center and shut down the temple.
It has been reported that the 115 tigers at Tiger Temple are abused and mistreated on a daily basis. The tigers are confined for 20 hours a day in small cages. They are only fed a vegetarian diet, which causes many health problems for these strict carnivores. When the tigers are put on public display, they are often beaten into submission so that tourists can sit on them or pose with them. There have also been claims that the tigers are generally drugged, as they appear listless and lethargic. In addition to this abuse, Tiger Temple is making false claims of conservation efforts. The center does not have a breeding license, yet continues to breed tigers. Also, Tiger Temple has connections with a tiger farm in Laos. It is illegal to exchange or sell tigers across international borders.
Please further investigate the activities at Tiger Temple and prevent further mistreatment and exploitation of wild animals. In everyone’s best interest, Tiger Temple needs to be shut down.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: J. Patrick Fischer via Wikimedia Commons