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circus without Wild Animals

24.9.2019

Bans or restrictions on the keeping of animals in circuses

Numerous countries have ban on wild animals in circuses. Some of them banned also domesticated animals such as horses or dogs, which are also used in animal trainings in the circus.

FOUR PAWS gives you an overview of the countries that have already taken action against wild animals in circuses - in Europe and around the world.

in EuropE

bans or restrictions on the keeping of animals in circuses

  • Austria: General ban on the use of wild animals.
  • Belgium: General ban on the use of wild animals.
  • Bosnia-Herzegovina: General ban on the use of all animals.
  • Bulgaria: General ban on the use of wild animals.
  • Croatia: General ban on the use of wild animals.
  • Cyprus: General ban on the use of all animals.
  • Czech Republic: Ban on the use of newly born apes, seals, whales (excl. dolphins), rhinoceroses, hippopotami, giraffes.
  • Denmark: Elephants, sea lions and zebras are still permitted in circuses, but a complete ban on all wild animals is announced for end of 2019.
  • England: General ban on the use of wild animals as of 2020.
  • Estonia: General ban on the use of wild animals.
  • Finland: Ban on the use of apes, predators, elephants, hippopotami, marsupials, rhinoceroses, seals, crocodiles, predatory birds, ostriches, wild forms of ruminant or equine animals.
  • Greece: General ban on the use of all animals.
  • Hungary: Ban on the use of elephants, rhinoceroses and primates. Ban on the use of newly captured animals from the wild. Ban on the use of species mentioned in Appendix I of the CITES Convention.
  • Ireland: General ban on the use of wild animals.
  • Italy: In November 2017, the Italian Parliament adopted a ban on animals in circuses and traveling exhibitions. The ban is not implemented yet.
  • Latvia: General ban on the use of wild animals.
  • Luxembourg: General ban on the use of wild animals.
  • Malta: General ban on the use of all animals.
  • Macedonia: General ban on the use of wild animals.
  • Netherlands: General ban on the use of wild animals.
  • Norway: General ban on the use of wild animals.
  • Portugal: Ban on the use of Great Apes. Breeding ban on whales, primate, wolves, bears, big cats, pinnipeds, elephants, manatees, rhinos, hippos, flightless birds, reptiles, constrictors. General ban of wild animals as of 2024.
  • Poland: Ban on the use of wild animals that were born in the wild.
  • Romania: General ban on the use of wild animals. 
  • Scotland: General ban on the use of wild animals.
  • Serbia: General ban on the use of wild animals.
  • Slovakia: General ban on the use of wild animals.
  • Slovenia: General ban on the use of wild animals.
  • Sweden: Ban on the use of apes, predators, rhinoceroses, giraffes, kangaroos, hippopotami, seals, predatory birds, ostriches, crocodiles, fallow deer, elephants and sea lions.
  • Wales: In July 2018, the Welsh government announced, that a bill will be introduced within the next 12 months to ban wild animals.

Wolrdwide

bans or restrictions on the keeping of animals in circuses

  • Bolivia: General ban of wild animals and domesticated species.
  • Costa Rica: General ban of wild animals.
  • Ecuador: Nationwide ban on the use of native wild animals; restrictions on the use of exotic animals; ban on the import of both native and exotic wild animals with circuses.
  • El Salvador: General ban of wild animals.
  • Guatemala: General ban of all animals.
  • Honduras: General ban of all animals.
  • India: General ban of wild animals.
  • Iran: General ban of wild animals.
  • Israel: General ban of wild animals.
  • Columbia: General ban of wild animals.
  • Lebanon: Nationwide ban on the use of certain species in circuses.
  • Mexico: General ban of wild animals.
  • Panama: Nationwide ban prohibiting 'entry of wild animals for use in static and travelling circuses and similar shows'.
  • Paraguay: General ban of wild animals.
  • Peru: General ban of wild animal.
  • Singapore: General ban of wild animals.
  • Taiwan: Nationwide ban on the import or export of protected wildlife for circuses.