Given enough time and patience any animal can be tamed, amirite?

Image for post Given enough time and patience any animal can be tamed, amirite?
74%Yeah You Are26%No Way
glertzles avatar Animals & Nature
1 18
The voters have decided that glertzle is right! Vote on the post to say if you agree or disagree.

This a very interesting post.

First of all, when we say "tame" what we really mean is make it tolerant to humans.

If you raised a tiger from birth it would be much more tolerant of humans, aka "tame", than one taken from the wild as an adult. However in both cases the tiger retains it's adrenal gland which drives it to hunt. If push comes to shove both would be far more likely to follow it's natural biology rather than your training. Either one would be considered "tame" as long as conditions allowed it to be that way. Consider the many examples of circus and zoo animals, lions, elephants, bears, apes, tigers, etc... that have attacked their trainers after years of showing no signs of aggression. Google it. Some well known cases; In 1994 a circus elephant killed her trainer, wounded her groomer, escaped and ran through the streets until the police shot and killed her. In 2003 a white tiger attacked and almost killed magician Roy Horn at the Mirage Hotel in Las Vegas. The tiger was one of several who lived with Horn and his husband and partner Ziegfried in their Vegas mansion. They were often filmed swimming with the tigers in the pool or wrestling on the lawn. In 2010 an orca killed it's trainer during a show at Sea World Orlando. It was the latest in a string of over 30 attacks by killer whales dating back to the 1960's. In most of these cases the trainers believed the animals were at least somewhat tolerant of humans. They had worked with them for months or years. In the case of Zeigfreid and Roy the tigers were treated like house pets.

If you want a truly tame animal you probably need to domesticate it. That would require many generations over which you would breed for desirable qualities and eliminate undesirable qualities. Basically you are genetically modifying a species of animal to change it into something else. Wolves into dogs is one example. As a result of domestication you can train a dog to starve before hurting you but you could never do that with a wolf regardless of how much time and patience you devoted to it. With enough time and effort any animal species can be domesticated. However when the process is complete you no longer have the original species genetically speaking. A wolf and a dog are related but they are different species. The same would be true for a tiger. After generations of genetic modification it wouldn't be a tiger as we know them today.

But all this brings up some important ethical and moral questions . Is it ever right to take an animal from it's natural habitat and "tame" it? Why are you doing this? What is the harm to the animal? At what point does intelligence change hunting to murder? Thousands of years ago people domesticated wild animals out of necessity. Food, as labor, for livestock, etc... Today none of those reasons apply. We do it for self-gratification, For entertainment. And every day we are learning more about animal intelligence and what is becoming clear is that they are far more sophisticated than we ever knew. They interact with the world in ways far more advanced than mere instinct. Some experience what can be described as emotions. Some have memory. Some are self-aware. Some have complex forms of communication. Some use reason to solve problems. Some react to loss/death in ways that seem to suggest they have some understanding of what it means. Some display behavior that suggests empathy. This new understanding is forcing most reasonably ethical people to re-consider how we treat animals. Trophy hunting, wearing fur, zoos, hunting whales, etc...become issues of morality. If we think specifically about your post the question becomes not if a specific animal can be tamed but if it should be tamed.

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@glertzle Your reply is very interesting! I was thinking of this famous study -...

I've seen that study.

I have to admit my beliefs regarding animals has changed significantly over the past decade due to this flood of new information. I have much more respect and compassion for animals. I have gotten more militant regarding what I think is cruel, inhumane, or immoral treatment of animals. Some examples...

It's time for circuses and marine parks to shut down. They are inherently inhumane. Even the best are incapable of giving their animals anything close to a decent life. The same goes for "swimming with dolphins". When you buy a ticket you bear some guilt for how those animals are treated. That's the truth.

Zoos today are better designed and have more space for the animals, most of which were born in captivity. Zoos are quick to point out that they promote animal conservation, research, and education. Okay, but can we reconcile life in captivity with our current understanding of animal intelligence?

Trophy hunting is barbaric, inhumane and immoral. There is no justification for shooting an elephant, a rhino, a lion, etc...except self-defense. I don't care why the hunter does it or what he/she gets out of it or why he/she should have the legal to it. None of that matters more than the animal's right to exist. It should be illegal.

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@Chris_the_Demon I've seen that study. I have to admit my beliefs regarding animals has changed significantly over the past...

I agree 100% with your second reply, as well but... have a look at this: https://www.bbc.com/news/health-49294861

Can any good at all come from evil? That's basically your position. This post opinion was merely trying to suggest that, motives and choice of methods aside, any life form could be altered (or tamed/domesticated) at the hand of humankind given enough time, money, and determination. I happen to disagree with my own post, by the way... I believe some species will always be unchangeable, dangerous and unpredictable. Even - especially? - people

@glertzle I agree 100% with your second reply, as well but... have a look at this:...

Well that certainly makes one's blood run cold!

Yes, you are right. Now I'm imagining all the different shapes, sizes, colors, etc...we might end up with if we did withtigers what we did with dogs. mischief smilie Hmmm...

Clearly you have never met Godzilla. I spent the last 3 years with her and she still as hateful as can be

@glertzle A yippy wee thing?

No she is B's hostile dragon

@Lil_Princess No she is B's hostile dragon

Godzilla... LOL
Well, the name is cute, at least

@glertzle Godzilla... LOL Well, the name is cute, at least

Yeah sadly she ain't the cute and cuddly type lol

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@Lil_Princess I feel she would latch on to my face

I see. Maybe try a different approach... Image in content

@glertzle I see. Maybe try a different approach...

That might actually work till she lunges at the side of the tank and I scream like a little girl hehe smilie