Improve Zoo Animal Welfare

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Target: Tom Vilsack, Secretary of Agriculture for the U.S. Department of Agriculture

Goal: Protect zoo animals from debilitating mental illness.

There is a disturbing sickness known as zoochosis which affects animals kept in captivity. Zoochosis commonly causes self-mutilation, biting, pacing, swaying, vomiting, miscarriages, tongue-biting, and coprophilia (infatuation with feces). These unnatural behaviors and unfortunate occurrences can, and often do, become compulsive.

Zoochosis is caused by incredible amounts of stress felt by animals in captivity. They are given little stimulation, put in unnatural climates and environments, and given little ability to do what they need to do to thrive as wild animals. People come in groups to gawk at the animals and they have nowhere to hide from the commotion. Zoochotic behaviors can be improved and we need to take action to get stricter regulation on the living situations of these wild animals brought into captivity.

Sign the petition below to show your support for new guidelines that would help improve the lives of zoo animals all over the country.


Dear Secretary Vilsack,

The circumstances in which animals are kept in zoos are cruel and can be improved if you and the U.S. Department of Agriculture are willing to make the changes. The lax regulation of zoos needs to be stopped. The laws put in place are insufficient and only take care of the basic physical needs of the animals rather than their psychological and emotional needs.

The animals need a better and more natural habitat to be able to thrive as they would in the wild. Animals kept in unnatural climates need to be given over to zoos with the appropriate climate. Animals need to have a way to escape the hustle and bustle of the zoo crowds. They need the ability to get away if they feel they are threatened or uncomfortable. Large animals need to be able to run and interact with other animals in a natural and stimulating way.

A natural environment, a natural habitat, a natural climate, and natural stimulation are the only ways to help improve the horrible effects of zoochosis. We desperately need these changes made and regulated. It is unfortunate that these wild animals live in captivity–the least we can do is encourage them to thrive naturally and live life the best they can.


[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Polski via Pixabay

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  1. Shar Scotland Shar Scotland says:

    Animals do not belong in zoos! BAN ALL ZOOS!!!

    • Carla Bond says:

      Unfortunately that’s not possible; if we ban the zoos we cannot protect all species of animals against poachers, morons of “funhunters”, farmers (wolves!! Bears!!), japanese (dolphins, whales, sharks!!) And others animalabusers. BUT… the zoos could be better turned into wildlife-/safariparks or zoos with one specific animalfamily (f.i. only birds or only plants and butterflies or only carnivores or only apes) than they have more room and no concrete cages. But that is difficult with a growing worldpopulation……

      • Jill Scott says:

        Yes ban zoos and ban these moronic hunters too. It’s wrong to keep animals behind bars – this is not what nature intended.

  2. Heather Brophy says:


  3. caryl sawyer says:

    Wow, great way to start the day. – asking Do Nothing Vilsack for a favor. For my next trick, I will listen to paint drying!

  4. Irena Franchi says:

    Improve Zoo Animal Welfare.

  5. Beverley Foster says:

    With televised documentaries and award winning wildlife camera footage, why oh why do we need to keep any animals in captivity? The days when people could only view these foreign, unusual and wonderful creatures behind the bars of zoo cages, are long gone. Please USA come into the 21st Century and abolish all such animal prisons, and transfer the inmates to wildlife sanctuaries, and safari parks to let them live out the rest of their lives naturally,in peace, calm and good health.

  6. Kathy Khoshfahm says:

    Tom – Thousands of people have signed this Petition and the ball is now in your court. Only you are in a position to make the changes necessary for improving the quality of life for these animals and We The People are asking you to do just that.

  7. Christine Bennett says:

    Subjecting animals to suffering is another horrific example of just how INHUMAN let alone INHUMANE we humans have stooped too … STAND UP! LET INTEGRITY CHANGE THE WORLD. Time to ACT Tom Vilsack!

  8. Catherine Alquier says:

    It’s difficult I understand to release some animals which were all they live in zoo. At least they should enjoy big spaces and as near as they can have of freedom.

  9. well it is you again i think you had better find a job that would suit you and you knew what you where doing like sweeping roads or a dustbin man because you sure as hell know nothing about animals except cruelty improve zoo animal welfare in fact they do not belong in captivity but you do forr your own safety.

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