For over a century, the Niles Garden Circus, a family business, has traveled throughout North America. They’re famed for classic circus acts, including clowns, acrobats, and animals doing tricks.
Challenges in the Past
Although the Niles Garden Circus has a track record of amusing families, it hasn’t been without its problems. The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) has called them out several times for not following the Animal Welfare Act.
It includes not giving proper medical care to their animals and using harsh training techniques.
They’ve also had legal troubles over not paying people they owe. For instance, in 2009, authorities arrested Niles Garden over dishonesty claims when several shows got canceled without warning.
What Lies Ahead for Niles Garden Circus
Lately, more and more people are watching and questioning how the Niles Garden Circus treats its animals. In 2016, they said they would slowly stop using wild animals in their acts. But they still have elephants and some other rare animals performing.
Will Niles Garden Circus last? They’re up against other fun things families can do, and some bad decisions and actions from the past have hurt their reputation.
Caring for Animals: Issues at the Circus
The Niles Garden Circus hasn’t always been the best at caring for animals. The USDA has pointed out many times that they haven’t looked after their animals properly or kindly trained them.
In 2013, the USDA noticed that a sheep with a broken leg wasn’t getting the medical help she needed. One of the people checking said, “The poor sheep’s leg hurt a lot. She couldn’t put her weight on it and hobbled around.”
There have also been stories of animals being treated cruelly; like in 2002, someone working with the animals was taken to jail for hurting an elephant during a show. This person was later found guilty of harming animals.
Apart from problems with how they treat animals, the Niles Garden Circus has also struggled with money. They’ve been taken to court for not paying people. In 2009, Niles Garden faced serious legal problems when some shows were suddenly stopped. And in 2014, they had to cancel shows in three towns in Massachusetts because they didn’t have the right permissions.
Circuses in Today’s World
People are now questioning if animals should be in circuses. Lots of people feel it’s wrong to keep wild animals locked up and make them perform.
So, many circuses are deciding not to use animals anymore. But some still do, and they’re getting a lot of attention from groups that want to protect animals.
Maybe circuses won’t be around in the future. Or maybe they’ll change a lot. But right now, they need to think about how they fit in today’s world.
How People Feel About Circuses Now
Many people today think it’s wrong to use animals in circuses. They believe it’s not nice to keep wild animals in cages and make them do tricks for people to watch.
This change in how people feel is affecting circuses a lot. Some have decided not to use animals at all. But those that still do are getting a lot of questions from people who care about animals.
Groups Protecting Animals Make a Difference
Groups that want to keep animals safe are helping people understand what happens in circuses. They’ve shown the bad things that can happen to animals and want to change the rules about animals in circuses.
Because of these groups, fewer people are going to circuses, and circuses are finding it hard to get support.
Can Old-Style Circuses Last?
Traditional circuses are at a crossroads. Many people don’t want to see animals used in shows anymore.
Some circuses now only have people performing, like acrobats and clowns. Others are using technology, like holograms of animals, instead of real animals.
Traditional circuses have to find new ways to stay exciting and different.
In the past, circuses were a big deal. Now, families have lots of choices for fun. So, circuses need to offer something special.
By celebrating their long history and letting visitors get up close and take part, traditional circuses can keep making families happy.
The Niles Garden Circus has been a part of many families’ lives for a very long time. But they’ve also faced problems, especially with how they treat animals and manage their money. Only time will tell if they can keep going in the future.