Lonely Planet Writer

Animal rights activists oppose petting zoos in Moscow shopping centres

The growing trend of indoor petting zoos in Moscow’s shopping centres has been criticised by animal rights activists.

Moscow petting zoo's under fire for mistreatment of animals.
Moscow petting zoo’s under fire for mistreatment of animals. Image by jamjar / CC BY 2.0

At these places, visitors can touch and feed animals from house pets to more exotic ones for approximately 300 roubles (US$5.50). According to animal rights activists, animals are kept out of their natural habitat and their biological cycles may be interrupted (eg nocturnal animals can be exposed to visitors during the day) and children are often let to handle animals without instruction or supervision. Five governmental organisations are responsible for the work of petting zoos in Moscow and inspect them for violations of the regulations. Read more: themoscowtimes.com