With an increasing number of people becoming aware of the harsh realities circus animals go through for the sake of human entertainment, in recent years, many circuses have started to step away from using animals in their performances.
One of the latest is Vietnam’s Hanoi Circus, which has decided to stop including wild bear performances in their shows and voluntarily surrendered their four moon bears to the wildlife aid group Animals Asia, so they can be placed in a sanctuary, reports People.
Hanoi Central Circus is among 15 other circuses in Vietnam that have begun to phase out using wild animals in performances. According to Animals Asia, these changes are a “crucial” move towards improving animal welfare globally and, with that goal in mind, the nonprofit is campaigning for more circuses to follow suit.
The four moon bears handed over by Hanoi Circus arrived at Animals Asia’s sanctuary in Tam Dao, Vietnam on June 15. “For the first time in years, these four beautiful bears will have access to wide, open spaces and feel lush, fresh grass beneath their paws. They will be able to express natural behaviors like climbing, foraging for food, digging in the dirt, and playing with their new friends,” said Heidi Quine, vet team director at Animals Asia’s Tam Dao sanctuary.
The bears will also be reuniting with two other moon bears from the Hanoi Central Circus that were brought to the sanctuary two years ago. Now all six of them will be enjoying retirement together, surrounded by lush habitats, soothing pools, and life-long health care.