We’re well into December and racing towards Christmas. Trees are decorated, lights are twinkling, and Reindeer are out and about at Christmas events. But, next time you go to pet Rudolph, think about these two things.
Reindeer are wild animals and shouldn’t be in captivity
In the wild, Reindeer like to be on the move. They live in herds and migrate annually between breeding and feeding grounds, sometimes travelling kilometres every day. Reindeer are used to space, the quiet of the wilderness and the cold. They are not suited to a captive environment. Captive Reindeer suffer from many problems, such as increased sickness and disease, an improper diet and malnutrition, stress and reduced breeding success.
Reindeer are animals, not entertainment
Christmas events are busy places, filled with crowds of people, noise and lights. Used to the wilderness, Reindeer can find this very stressful and overwhelming. It is also difficult to ensure their welfare and frequent travel between events simply adds to the stress, especially if different groups of Reindeer are mixed and moved around.