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Radio City Music Hall’s Christmas Spectacular features live camels, sheep, and donkeys in Nativity scenes, even though it’s highly stressful and confusing to animals to be transported, placed in unfamiliar settings, and forced to endure large crowds and loud noises.
Animals exploited in these types of displays are frequently rented from exhibitors. Their handlers commonly use whips, food deprivation, and other abusive tools and techniques to make them obey commands out of fear of physical punishment, and their living conditions are typically dismal. For decades, Radio City Music Hall has worked with Dawn Animal Agency, a notoriously cruel animal exhibitor that has been violating federal law for just as long. The U.S. Department of Agriculture has cited it for failing to keep enclosures clean and in good repair, failing to provide animals with adequate space, and having incomplete veterinary programs. Just this year, the exhibitor was cited for having cluttered, damaged, and grime-filled enclosures as well as for storing food near dangerous chemicals, which could lead to toxic contamination.
All animals can experience fear, pain, and stress, just as we can, and they should never be put in harm’s way for any show. Christmas Spectacular already features immensely talented human performers, and reinventing the show to dazzle audiences without exploiting animals would be truly aligned with the Christmas spirit.
Please join PETA in urging Radio City Music Hall not to use live animals in future shows.