Footage of a horn blowing bear being paraded around in a car in Moscow has gone viral drawing ire of animal lovers on social media.
According to The Straits Times, the incident which took place on June 14 with the 45-second clip being tweeted by football journalist Peter Staunton.
Just been sent this, appears to be a bear in a jeep, blowing a vuvuzela (?) and then giving a quenelle salute. And told it's happening somewhere in Moscow. pic.twitter.com/Tg0Hj0taSo— Peter Staunton (@petermstaunton) June 14, 2018
The bear is seen blowing a vuvuzela while sitting upright.
Passers-by were taking photos and videos of the trained animal playing the instrument.
After the bear's handler seated beside the animal grabs the vuvuzela out of its paws, the bear - a symbol of Russia - then begins to perform a derogatory gesture.
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The clip of the bear, which has since garnered nearly 1.5 million views, was heavily criticised by animal lovers.
"If that bear went on a rampage, I wouldn't shed a tear," one response read.
"Poor bear. My heart hurts thinking about what led it there, and what others are in similar situations," another Twitter user said.
Others defended the bear's handlers, saying that bears have been domesticated in Russia.
"Bears are naturally kind animals and these ones in Russia have been domestic for many generations, so they do not need to be beat to train them. They are trained by a method of rewarding, like training a dog," read one tweet.
In April of this year, the same bear was spotted at a football match in Russia, to present the ball to the referee while standing upright.
After handing the ball over, the bear then performed gestures resembling clapping.
Animal activist groups promptly criticised the stunt, saying that it was "inhumane".
"To see such a majestic animal reduced to a pitch-side crowd-pleasing clown is utterly devastating,"Wendy Higgins, a spokesperson for the Humane Society International said.
"This bear belongs in the wild, not passed from pillar to post to be rented out as a mascot," she added.
People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals also responded, saying that using the bear has likely had its teeth and claws been "cruelly removed".
The article originally appeared in The Straits Times
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