Animal Welfare: World Animal Protection

Baboo is committed to sustainable travel and animal protection, pledging to endorse responsible tourism without exploiting wild animals.

We all hope to encounter wild animals while traveling. Although we love and admire wildlife, we rarely consider the practices that we might witness while visiting. Finding which activities or organizations best promote conservation is complex.

Travelers must ensure that the organizations and tours they participate in strive to conserve, rather than exploit, the animals with whom they share their journey and the world.

Because of these reasons, Baboo has agreed to not sell or advertise the use of elephants or wild animals. Instead, we commit to providing animal conservation and welfare activities, as well as viewing animals in their natural habitat, and have pledged to this purpose with the World Animal Protection. Together we are moving the world to protect animals.

Click here to learn more about our Wildlife-Friendly pledge, and find below some pointers to help you figure out what to look out for to travel responsibly:

Animal Welfare – Baboo
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Basic animal welfare

Baboo supports the Five Pillars of Basic Animal Welfare, which are universally accepted animal rights that include the following freedoms:

  • Freedom from Hunger & Thirst
  • Freedom From Discomfort
  • Freedom From Pain, Injury & Disease
  • Freedom to Express Normal Behavior
  • Freedom From Fear & Distress

Animals must be provided with a suitable environment comparable to their natural habitat, and appropriate to their species. To provide a clean, safe, healthy and nurturing environment in which to live and thrive.

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Working animals

Horses, donkeys, and camels have gone through a selective breeding process over ten generations. They are used to working. Even so, we keep in mind some basic guidelines to ensure the animal’s health and safety.

  • The animal should be well-fed and in good health, with no sores or wounds on their body or neck from the harness or damage to their legs and feet.
  • Handlers should treat the animal with respect and provide appropriate and sufficient food, water, and medical care.
  • The size of the animal should be suitable for the weight of its rider/load.

We ask that, as a traveler, to see if these guidelines are followed. If you feel there has been a violation, please report it to the local authorities.

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Wildlife viewing

Wild animals are best viewed in their natural habitat. Many of the most incredible travel experiences occur when we simply sit back and watch a scene unfold before our eyes. Those moments are magical. Interfering with an animal’s natural habitat and behavior can cause them undue stress. Also, they might attack when under pressure. Keep your safety in mind at all times. Respecting the animals and staying at a safe distance is best.

Please keep a safe distance from wild animals and keep as quiet as possible when viewing them up close.

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Animal products

A trip abroad provides a tempting opportunity to buy an ivory necklace or tiger-tooth necklace, but remember that wild animals lost their lives for these products to reach the market. The materials for these products are generally obtained illegally, putting animals at risk. Buying things for which animals have died is simply not cool. Not buying them gives a clear signal to the market. By doing so, you might save the lives of other animals.

It is highly recommended, we would like to say mandatory, that travelers avoid purchasing souvenirs made with wild animals. Just create unforgettable memories. They last longer anyway.

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Elephant riding

Baboo does not include any Elephant Riding activities in our programs and discourages tourists from participating in activities that use animals for entertainment. Elephant riding is popular in Southeast Asia, and it’s on many travelers’ bucket lists. Many tourists don’t know that for tourists to ride an elephant; the animal first must be tamed. In that process, the elephants suffer greatly. You do not want Elephants to suffer, do you? 

A great way to experience elephants in the wild is to support a center or sanctuary focused on their welfare and conservation.

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Wild animals in captivity

As free-living animals deserve to live in their natural habitat, wild animals used for entertainment have likely had a traumatic and harsh “breaking” process. Chaining, isolation, neglect, and an unhealthy diet are very common. Movies such as “The Cove” and “Blackfish” question and criticize the methods used to acquire and hold marine animals in entertainment parks.

We, therefore, do not recommend any animal training or animal-exhibiting activities.

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Selfies & walking with big cats

Tourist attractions may use wild animals and even big cats. You might be able to walk with them or even take selfies. But if you cannot verify the animals’ welfare, you should steer away from these activities. These big young cats are usually separated from their mothers when they are barely born. Baby tigers and lions in petting zoos face many dangers and are often drugged to keep them submissive. It’s just sad when you think about it.

How they are treated behind the scenes, sometimes shown in videos and photos, is rarely pretty. Just don’t do it.

Let a dedicated team of local in-destination experts start working on your tailor-made trip today

Let a dedicated team of local in-destination experts start working on your tailor-made trip today