Petition Closed
Petitioning Event Coordinator Director of Events

Cancel "Pig Races" and "Petting Zoo" at upcoming 2014 Strawberry Festival


"I deal all day with animals exploited for entertainment," said Amy Rhodes, PETA's animals and entertainment specialist. "It still amazes me the ways people find to exploit animals for just a laugh or to line their pockets."

Animals aren’t actors, spectacles to imprison and gawk at, or circus clowns. Yet thousands of these animals are forced to perform silly, confusing tricks under the threat of physical punishment; are carted across the country in cramped and stuffy boxcars or semi-truck trailers; are kept chained or caged in barren, boring, and filthy enclosures; and are separated from their families and friends—all for the sake of human “entertainment.” Many of these animals even pay with their lives.

Traveling zoos and petting zoos are bad news for animals and humans. They subject animals to the stress of transport, alien environments, irregular feeding and watering, mishandling, harassment, abuse and crowds of strangers.(PETA website)

Barnyard exhibits are known cause of bacterial infections. "In the past two years alone," warns PETA, "more than 60 people were infected with E. coli and more than 100 cases were suspected to have resulted from visits to petting zoos in Florida and North Carolina."

Beyond that, some moms think petting zoos are a bad idea in general. Says one mom, "Beyond the unsanitary aspect of petting zoos, I think they're cruel to animals. Keeping them in a small corralled area where curious kids harass them is just cruel. I try to discourage my toddler from participating." ( website)

About Pig Races:

There are a number of traveling pig racing shows in the United States. Usually, the races precede some sporting event—a baseball game, rodeo, or other festival, such as a county fair. Usually there is no betting placed on the animals. This is for “entertainment” and not to make money. The result is the same; animals are exploited for human entertainment. Other animals may also be used in these races, for instance small dogs.

Contrary to being fun and educational, pig racing and other animal spectacles promote attitudes of callousness and disrespect toward animals.

 People at these events see cute animals doing amusing or amazing stunts. But these animals are trained to perform tricks that are not natural for their species. They are often subjected to stress or pain from training methods, and are starved before racing, transported in trucks, held in cages and released into strange surroundings to perform for large, noisy crowds

It is disrespectful to treat animals as objects of derision,

Pigs are intelligent creatures with strong social bonds and complex emotions. Like our dogs and cats, they are individuals that have personalities, needs and interests. They feel pleasure and excitement, as well as fear, pain and loneliness. Many people are increasingly challenging the view that animals are mere resources and commodities, here for our every use and entertainment, however trivial they might be.

 Agricultural fairs and animal exhibits are said to be educational. But they present to the public a distorted and inaccurate view of farming in America. In contrast to the nostalgic family farm of the last century, 99 percent of all farm animals are now raised on factory farms, where animals are intensively confined in windowless buildings for their entire lives and denied their most basic natural instincts. Today’s farming practices threaten our economy, our health and the environment.

We have a natural affection for animals and a fascination with how they act. We have much to learn from the growing science of animal cognition and communication. Families would be better advised to skip the pig races and opt for a trip to a farm sanctuary to see animals that  are able to live in social groups and exercise their natural instincts.




This petition was delivered to:
  • Event Coordinator
    Director of Events

    Karen Norman started this petition with a single signature, and now has 852 supporters. Start a petition today to change something you care about.

    Today: Karen is counting on you

    Karen Norman needs your help with “Director of Events: Cancel "Pig Races" and "Petting Zoo" at upcoming 2014 Strawberry Festival”. Join Karen and 851 supporters today.