Target: David Blasko, Director of Animal Care at the Mirage Hotel
Goal: Improve living conditions for the dolphins at the Mirage Hotel
The dolphins at the Mirage Hotel in Las Vegas have been mistreated for far too long. Animal rights activists and dolphin experts have documented signs of intense stress in the dolphins at the Mirage Hotel, including listless swimming, biting at gates, and symptoms of a virus known as pox. The pools at the Mirage lack enough shade to keep the dolphins cool—temperatures in Las Vegas frequently reach over 100 degrees and currently the dolphins have nowhere to go to get out of the heat. Twelve dolphins have died at the hotel since 1991, earning the exhibit the nickname ‘Dolphin Death Pool.’
Dolphins are not desert animals. At the Mirage, they are kept in shallow pools without enough shade to keep the water at an acceptable temperature, and come into constant contact with hotel visitors. Performing is already stressful, especially because dolphins are so intelligent, but having to do so in a desert climate without shade is having very real effects on the dolphins at the hotel. Dolphins can live over 40 years in the wild, but of the 12 dolphins that have died at the Mirage Hotel, only two lived past the age of 20.
Action needs to be taken now to save the Mirage dolphins. The hotel needs to provide the dolphins with a better enclosure, starting by adding more shade. The health of the animals needs to be evaluated by professionals to be sure that their stress is not causing adverse health effects. If the dolphins are not being taken care of, the exhibit needs to be shut down; there is no excuse for treating any animals this way, let alone animals as intelligent and unique as dolphins. Ask the director of animal care at the Mirage to put the health of the dolphins before profits from entertainment.
Dear Director Blasko,
As Director of Animal Care at the Mirage Hotel in Las Vegas, the health and safety of the animals should be your top concern. Animal rights advocates and dolphin experts have documented signs of stress in the dolphins at the hotel and asked for changes to be made to ensure their health and safety, including adding shade to the enclosure to lower the temperature. Response from the hotel has been minimal; despite frequent protests, there is no indication that any changes are being made or even considered.
Dolphins are incredibly intelligent animals that need lots of activity and space to keep them busy and healthy. Animal rights advocates are concerned that the dolphins at the Mirage are not getting the health care that they need. Please put the health and safety of the dolphins in the exhibit first and ensure that changes are being made to ensure the dolphins’ wellbeing.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: RevolverOcelot via Wikimedia Commons