Sunday, September 22, 2013

The Alaskan Collie Fluffyterrier

I was delighted to read this story last month about Costa Rica’s plan to close its zoos. Since I was lazy posting about it and then Mano Singham scooped me :), I decided to wait* for an occasion to include it with some related news.

That occasion has already arrived, with this charming story about a Costa Rican dog shelter:


*In the meantime, I also came across a response to one of Singham’s questions:
I do not like zoos or circuses for many reasons but one is the way that animals are kept in captivity. At least with some of the better public zoos where the animals are given lots of room and are treated well, some sort of case can be made for their existence, that they increase awareness in the public of the need to preserve wildlife and their habitats. I do not know though if a causal relationship has been established between visiting zoos and increased support for wildlife .
I mentioned Lori Marino in a recent post, and while getting a link to some more information about her work I noticed a link to her critique of a study about the educational and conservation value of zoos and aquaria. (There’s a link to the full text on the page at the red “This is to announce a new publication in Society & Animals.”)What I love about it is that she rigorously picks apart the methodology of this research exactly as she did the methods of woo/PR studies about “Dolphin-Assisted Therapy.” These critical pieces would be useful for teaching about research methods in the social sciences.

(Of course, even if zoos did serve an educational/conservation purpose, this wouldn’t necessarily be sufficient justification for treating other animals in this way. Nor would it necessarily mean that better alternatives don’t exist.)

No comments:

Post a Comment