There can be no lions or tigers or bears — not even dogs or horses — in circus rings under a law passed without opposition in the city legislature Monday. Penalties include fines ranging from
Circus performers say the law will leave both animals and humans unemployed.
"Hundreds of families are going to be out of work," said
Holding signs reading "
Cedeno said the animals are treated well and are already regulated by the environment department, He said old stereotypes of an animal trainer with a whip in hand are outdated, and that circus animals are brought up from infancy in an atmosphere where performing is form of play.
He said each tiger, for example, eats three or four chickens per day, costing about
Supporters of the measure say the relentless training, constant movement in enclosed vehicles and frequent performances hurt the animals. They argue that circuses, like
"The first thing people ask is 'do you have animals?' And if you don't have animals, they won't come," said Vazquez.
The city of 9 million follows several other Mexican cities and states in banning circus animal acts, though the measure passed Monday does not apply to shows with dolphins or bullfighting, nor does it prohibit the use of animals in
Circuses will be given one year to change their acts.
But Cedeno fears the ban could go nation-wide at some point.
"If they really enact a nationwide ban in
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