Sharing animal videos which have been proclaimed as “cute” or “funny” can be a double-edged sword. While we all love to witness sweet kittens playing together, sigh over beautiful interspecies friendships, or chuckle over a pup showing some love to his human friends, there are some serious questions to be considered when we wish to share a video of an endangered or captive animal that simply presents their actions as “cute,” without providing further information on the problems they face, or how people can help.
In the five-minute video above, which was shot in the Hokkaido Sapporo Maruyama Zoo, Japan, we see a polar bear cub playing with a bucket and placing it over his head. The clip has been praised as sweet and funny, and widely shared by people who may wish to spread awareness about the beauty of these animals. However, what people may not realize about the video is that, rather than wishing to amuse human spectators by being funny, the bear is likely bored by his unstimulating life in captivity. Polar bears are not meant to live in small enclosures where the climate may be warmer than the type their species is naturally adapted to. Especially places where they are not allowed to exercise any of their natural instincts, and are put on show for human entertainment.
Furthermore, the video does little to highlight the many threats polar bears face today. To find out how you can help these animals, check out these articles:
- There’s a Choice We Make Every Day That’s Causing Polar Bears to Eat Dolphins
- How Global Warming, Hunting and Industrial Exploration Threatens the Polar Bear
- How Saving Our Rainforests Could Determine the Fate of the Polar Bear Species
Polar bears are a majestic and endangered species that gravely need our help. So rather than sharing a video of a captive polar bear in a zoo, share information that can help ease the plight of these animals. That would really be the “cute” thing to do.