As of this past Saturday, it is officially illegal to have direct contact with tigers, jaguars, cougars, leopards and mountain lions in New York.
This new law means posing and taking pictures with big cats in the city is over.
As World Animal Protection says, “people usually aren’t aware that a ‘once in a lifetime’ selfie with a captive tiger means a lifetime of suffering for that animal.”
“We applaud the New York State Assembly for passing this tremendously positive measure that we hope will inspire other states to enact similar laws.”
Usually tigers and such wild animals used for entertainment activities like close encounter pictures are tranquillized in order to keep the public safe. Captive wild animals are also subjected to a life behind bars for which they are simply not built.
“Tigers used as photo props live their whole lives in unnatural conditions that can never meet their needs. To New Yorkers that love animals, our message is simple: see them in the wild,” said Priscilla Ma with World Animal Protection.