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  #261  
Old 18.05.2015, 18:27
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Re: Please help get knie to stop using animals

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And yet we know that training a dog doesn't necessarily involve any of those things - it can be done with entirely positive methods, from day one.

Why do you believe that horses or elephants are different, and can't be trained without pain/humiliation?
I'm going to commit the sin of quoting myself from several pages back, when this thread was started a few years ago, since the subject has come up again...

I would urge folks to read the Karen Pryor articles on the use of clicker training in zoo animals.

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Just had to pick up on this:

Wild animals in zoos and other captivity situations are often trained using positive reward based techniques - in fact, the classic clicker-training (a form of operant conditioning) that is standard in positive dog training was first developed for use with dolphins. Many zoo trainers are now using these techniques, proving that the old ideas of using force and punishment are as obsolete with wild animals as they are with domesticated ones.

All kinds of animals have been successfully clicker-trained, from horses to chickens, to lions, to warthogs.

Here are articles by Karen Pryor, the founder of the 'clicker movement' and well known force-free animal training advocate, on the use of operant conditioning in the Dallas and Niabi Zoos:

http://www.clickertraining.com/node/124

http://www.clickertraining.com/node/2466

It should be pointed out that training is used not just for teaching tricks to entertain humans - the animals discussed here were being trained to accept handling in order to give needed medical care. Training also provides an opportunity for necessary mental stimulation and social contact.

And to add to the discussion of training non-domesticated animals using positive reinforcement, here is a very good article and video from Big Cat Rescue in Florida on the use of clicker (operant conditioning) training with non-domesticated cats (small and big) in their sanctuary. You can see how well non-domesticated species respond to the use of positive reward-based training.

http://bigcatrescue.org/operant-cond...ig-cat-rescue/


(This is one of the best videos I've seen on clicker/operant conditioning, by the way.)

---

Positive training simply boils down to using only positive primary motivators, things an animal naturally wants to have (food being the strongest natural motivator) to elicit behavior, rather than using negative primary motivators, things an animal wants to avoid (fear, pain, 'dominating' an animal).

Animal training - of any species - can and should be done without force, fear, or pain.



(I'll leave the philosophical argument of how (or even whether) we should interact with non-domesticated animals for another post. But if we are to interact with them, let's do it right.)
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  #262  
Old 18.05.2015, 19:27
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Re: Please help get knie to stop using animals

Next time I see Rolf I'll ask him how the animals are kept. I am sure he would love to discuss it with me. Of course, I don't think he spends much time here in our little town, rather in Mallorca, and I am not sure I would know who he is if I bumped into him at our little Volg, although the Tesla might tip me off as to his identity...or so I have heard!
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  #263  
Old 18.05.2015, 20:45
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Re: Please help get knie to stop using animals

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And yet we know that training a dog doesn't necessarily involve any of those things - it can be done with entirely positive methods, from day one.

Why do you believe that horses or elephants are different, and can't be trained without pain/humiliation?
Perhaps my perceptions of Knie go back to these childhood memories of the lions and tigers in small cages at the back of the circus, where few went to look! Point taken. You just can't compare the training of horses and dogs, that have been domesticated for 1000s of years, and lions and tigers- or even elephants, really.

Done a bit of reading and checking today and see Rolf Knie actually agrees- and that they have not used tigers or lions at the circus for a few years now- as he can't find any trainer that will do the job without hard training methods. Nock circus still use tigers and a trainer from Italy though.

As said, Knie and to some extent Nock have the best looked after animals- but for me, the time for animals in circus is done and gone- and I'm pretty sure will die out as people shun those types of circuses more and more- to favour others like Cirque du Soleil.

Birds in cages make me weep - so I would never ever keep one. My dogs have always had a large garden and huge country walks, and my cats come and go as they please- comparing keeping cats and dogs in those conditions to circus animals is plain daft, really. If I could not offer those almost perfect conditions for them, I would never ever have adopted any of them (all rescues...I could never buy a dog bred for sale and my enjoyment) - however much I'd want to have a pet - just as my parents explained when I was a child, that we couldn't have a dog as we were all out during the day (we always had cats with free access to outdoor).

My enjoyment of them is absolutely secondary to their welfare and their rights to have as natural and free life as possible.

Last edited by Odile; 18.05.2015 at 22:52.
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  #264  
Old 18.05.2015, 21:10
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Re: Please help get knie to stop using animals

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As for cats, dogs, horses, cows, etc. those (most) aren't kept in cages, are they.
No, but they are kept for our pleasure and amusement aren't they. Well, cows for milk and meat, but cats, dogs, horses are all for us to enjoy - no other reason why we keep them. So what's the difference? That they're domesticated? Elephants, camels, llamas, etc, have been domesticated for thousands of years too.

Does Rolf have much to do with the show nowadays? I thought he'd pretty much left all that for his painting. Freddie and Franco run the show now that their fathers have passed on.
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Old 19.05.2015, 10:52
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Re: Please help get knie to stop using animals

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Does Rolf have much to do with the show nowadays? I thought he'd pretty much left all that for his painting. Freddie and Franco run the show now that their fathers have passed on.
Rolf and his son Gregory have their own things: http://www.circusohlala.ch and http://www.saltonatale.ch/index.php
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  #266  
Old 19.05.2015, 12:10
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Re: Please help get knie to stop using animals

Ah, I knew about saltonatale, but not the other one.
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Old 19.05.2015, 12:19
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Re: Please help get knie to stop using animals

Up until now I have always kept by cute little pussycat locked in at home, but following the wise words I found on this thread I let her out last night for a bit of a run around.

As soon as I opened the door she was - leaping around, climbing trees, having an absolute hoot. Unfortunately around 9pm when I called for her to come back in she was nowhere to be found. I shook the box of tried food but still nothing.

I kept trying for an hour or so but without luck, knowing what cats are like she probably found somewhere to tuck up and have a snooze.

Anyway, getting breakfast this morning I opened the back door, and there she was, our cute little Petal (I know, what a name for a cat), all snuggled up on the patio table next to the remains of what I believe to be a sheep.

So, if you are in the Dubendorf area, please be aware that Petal is no longer a house-cat.

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Old 19.05.2015, 19:33
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Re: Please help get knie to stop using animals

How anyone can pay money to go to the circus and then sit there and "notice" horses being whipped and elephants being poked just to complain is beyond me. When this is not taking place, at all.

One question, when you have saved all these animals that are being abused where are you going to put them? Because, obviously the circus won't be able to keep them.

Is your garden big enough for an elephant? or a herd of horses?

In Geneva they are having a morning (Free of charge!! shock horror!!) for people to go and watch the elephants being trained and learn from it. And meet them, at the end of August. I shall google the exact dates. Or google yourselves - Cirque Knie 2015.

How do we see wild animals if not in zoos or circuses, or on the telly? Unless you have loadsa money and can afford a two week safari in Africa? Those must be wonderful, life changing holidays - but the prices are sky high. And sometimes the lions are shy!!

I have seen elephants in the wild in Africa (on a mini overnight safari) and it was great. A daddy, mummy and baby.

Dodgyken - i think you have my sister!!

Last edited by Patsycat; 19.05.2015 at 19:47.
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  #269  
Old 19.05.2015, 19:36
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Re: Please help get knie to stop using animals

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cats, dogs, horses are all for us to enjoy
As meat.

Tom
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  #270  
Old 19.05.2015, 21:00
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Re: Please help get knie to stop using animals

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Up until now I have always kept by cute little pussycat locked in at home, but following the wise words I found on this thread I let her out last night for a bit of a run around.

As soon as I opened the door she was - leaping around, climbing trees, having an absolute hoot. Unfortunately around 9pm when I called for her to come back in she was nowhere to be found. I shook the box of tried food but still nothing.

I kept trying for an hour or so but without luck, knowing what cats are like she probably found somewhere to tuck up and have a snooze.

Anyway, getting breakfast this morning I opened the back door, and there she was, our cute little Petal (I know, what a name for a cat), all snuggled up on the patio table next to the remains of what I believe to be a sheep.

So, if you are in the Dubendorf area, please be aware that Petal is no longer a house-cat.

The ones round here are even cuter - much more burnt orange in colour and tufts on the ears ...

Medeafleecer/quote: ' No, but they are kept for our pleasure and amusement aren't they. '

NO- certainly not mine- they are kept for their welfare and in return give me lots of pleasure... and sometimes amusement. So, the other way round. I think at times I amuse them too. They were bred for the pleasure and amusement of some people, who when not amused anymore, chucked them by the side of the road... or worse. I could never ever buy a dog bred for my 'amusement', NEVER. And neither do I wish other animals to be kept in cages to 'amuse' me at a circus- especially as I don't find it 'funny' or entertaining at all, in any way shape or form.

Last edited by Odile; 19.05.2015 at 21:15.
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  #271  
Old 20.05.2015, 06:03
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Re: Please help get knie to stop using animals

To say it clearly, to me, the animals are THE Major thing in a circus, In case of KNIE I am sure that the animals are treated well. The space they have of course remains a critical aspect.
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  #272  
Old 20.05.2015, 09:23
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Re: Please help get knie to stop using animals

I agree Wollidshofener, the animals are a major part of the circus for me too.

Odile, you say you keep them for their welfare, but left to their own devices, i.e. living wild, they'd be fine. You may not think so, but they're well able to fend for themselves and don't need us. Nor do dogs or horses - milk cows could be problematic given that we've bred them for more milk production than is natural, but even they could possibly adapt if set free. Of course we would then have major "pest" problems on our hands, but maybe that's something we ought to learn to live with and give them their true freedom.
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  #273  
Old 20.05.2015, 09:34
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Re: Please help get knie to stop using animals

All the dogs we adopted were roaming the streets, and not faring very well in the modern world. Our Pepper had been hit by a car, and badly injured. Our Gatsby, was found in the middle of no-where in the Valais, by friends. Judging by her terror of gunshot, I'd imagine she had been shot at many time. So no, in a modern (and cruel), overbuilt, over grazed world as we live in- leaving dogs and cats to their own devices, to multiply exponanitally- is NOT a good idea (and I am sure you know that - have you ever visited a country where this happens!?!). And as all our pets, be they cats or dogs, were adopted as older animals. it would be a disaster for them (as I am sure you know too).
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Old 20.05.2015, 09:43
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Re: Please help get knie to stop using animals

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All the dogs we adopted were roaming the streets, and not faring very well in the modern world. Our Pepper had been hit by a car, and badly injured. Our Gatsby, was found in the middle of no-where in the Valais, by friends. Judging by her terror of gunshot, I'd imagine she had been shot at many time. So no, in a modern (and cruel), overbuilt, over grazed world as we live in- leaving dogs and cats to their own devices, to multiply exponanitally- is NOT a good idea (and I am sure you know that - have you ever visited a country where this happens!?!). And as all our pets, be they cats or dogs, were adopted as older animals. it would be a disaster for them (as I am sure you know too).
I totally agree with you, Odile. Stray dogs can become a real problem, and as much as local people love and feed them, even take them to vets and would fight tooth and nails to protect them from municipal dogcatchers, they can't be left alone on their own devices.... not good for them, not good for people. I suppose the problem is similar with stray cats. If you love a stray dog/cat you should really take it home...
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Old 20.05.2015, 09:51
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Re: Please help get knie to stop using animals

Maybe the point is to stop animals from continuing to be born into such lives.

And really? So what if every person on the planet had the right to indulge in whatever selfish desire they may have? It's not our right to be able to scrutinise every species up close and in cages. Yes! Watch them on TV. I mean really? Is that your opinion? "Well I'm am a human, so every other animal must be encaged conveniently close to my house so that I can go ogle them any time in their misery."

Oh humanity, you know not what you do.
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One question, when you have saved all these animals that are being abused where are you going to put them? Because, obviously the circus won't be able to keep them.]
[How do we see wild animals if not in zoos or circuses, or on the telly? Unless you have loadsa money and can afford a two week safari in Africa?
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Old 20.05.2015, 10:40
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Re: Please help get knie to stop using animals

Exactly- now with TV and vidéo, etc- and superb documentaries- we can see and admire those animals in the comfort of our own lounge- in a way that would never be possible before- and actually see detail and behaviour that could never be witnessed on a safari.

Zoos and circuses therefore belong to pre above technology. No need for it now- and I'd never ever wish for animals to be kept in cages and made to perform in circuses for my entertainment.

Our pets are and have always been and always will be- casts offs from those who buy them as 'gadgets' or fashion toys, then discard them when they are bored (or due to bad luck/illness, death even)- none of them were bred for my entertainment. I could not live with that- knowing there are 100000000000s needing good homes right now.

I'd love a cute puppie once- but this is not going to happen, unless there are extremely good reasons...
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Old 20.05.2015, 19:57
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Re: Knie... barbaric

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Have you ever seen the show yourself? i went with group and all of us were disgusted.... everyone is so focussed on teh show they dont look around them and see what else is going on around the ring side..... anyone who supports them and their traditional family entertainment is sick...
Yes, I've been to Knie with my little boy and had a great time. I must admit, I didn't notice the surreptitious torturing of the animals on the sidelines. Quite bold of the trainers to do that when they could be spotted by someone in the audience who wasn't paying full attention to the show in the middle of the ring. One would have thought they'd practice their torture session in some darkened tent or caravan, away from prying eyes (Viz-style), but maybe they get a kick from the risk of being caught.

I'll keep an eye out for that next time I go. Thanks for the heads up.
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  #278  
Old 21.05.2015, 10:41
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Re: Knie... barbaric

Well that's alright then. So long as you dont have to witness the beatings of the captive animals, the show can go on.
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Yes, I've been to Knie with my little boy and had a great time. I must admit, I didn't notice the surreptitious torturing of the animals on the sidelines. Quite bold of the trainers to do that when they could be spotted by someone in the audience who wasn't paying full attention to the show in the middle of the ring. One would have thought they'd practice their torture session in some darkened tent or caravan, away from prying eyes (Viz-style), but maybe they get a kick from the risk of being caught.

I'll keep an eye out for that next time I go. Thanks for the heads up.
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Old 21.05.2015, 12:20
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Re: Please help get knie to stop using animals

I suggest you get your eyes tested. I've never yet seen any animals being beaten in a circus, show ring or anywhere else for that matter. When I was younger and single I spent entire holidays doing nothing but visiting Knie and other circuses around Europe and have yet to witness anything of the sort. For Knie I'd usually visit the zoo in the morning, go there again in the afternoon because you could watch the animals being prepared to enter/exit the ring (don't know if they still have the zoo open during performances these days) and then go to the evening performance. I did this every day for nearly 2 weeks year after year.

I've also seen how some animal welfare groups twist the facts to suit their case. Many years ago Knie had a hippo in the zoo who had his own travelling pool which he could use as and when he liked. There was an article in BBC wildlife magazine - with info/pics provided by the animal welfare group - which showed the hippo's enclosure without the pool; the picture had been cropped to leave it out deliberately. So please don't believe everything you read regarding cruelty to animals in circuses as it may very well be doctored info.
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Old 21.05.2015, 12:29
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Re: Please help get knie to stop using animals

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Exactly- now with TV and vidéo, etc- and superb documentaries- we can see and admire those animals in the comfort of our own lounge- in a way that would never be possible before- and actually see detail and behaviour that could never be witnessed on a safari.

Zoos and circuses therefore belong to pre above technology. No need for it now- and I'd never ever wish for animals to be kept in cages and made to perform in circuses for my entertainment.

.
Zoos now perform important breeding programmes.

These need to be funded.

How can you admire an animal on the TV if it doesn't exist any more in real life?

If people want to direct their anger and indignation - perhaps they ought to do it against the Chinese people with their stupid Traditional Chinese medicine (and Western users) and the poachers - in that order.
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