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#RealTrophy Campaign aims to end Canned Lion Hunting

If a picture says 1000 words, we are hoping these pictures save 1000 lions!


BOSTON MA - NOVEMBER 2015 - FOUR PAWS, the international animal welfare organization, takes a clear stand with its new #RealTrophy campaign: Every year, a 1,000 lions are legally killed in South Africa. Most lions are killed in a canned hunt, which involves shooting a captive-bred animal in a fenced area with no way to escape. The FOUR PAWS petition for a ban on this cruel practice has already gained 200,000 supporters. With the #RealTrophy campaign, FOUR PAWS hopes to mobilize thousands more to protest against lion hunting by sharing their own trophy pictures on




The best shot is taken with a camera, not a gun, and today your picture can be worth more than just a thousand words – it can help save the lives of 1,000 lions!


With a photo of their personal #RealTrophy, supporters can show on the website what they are really proud of: a medal, a certificate, a handmade piece of furniture or a giant squash from your vegetable garden – all creative ideas are welcome as long as they are animal-friendly and not a hunting trophy. Thomas Pietsch, wild animals expert at FOUR PAWS, states “The South African lion industry and the illegal killing of the wild lion Cecil have caused outrage around the world. Now, we want to give our supporters the opportunity to show the South African government that there are much better trophies than the skin or head of a lion above the fireplace.”


In South Africa, there are more than 6,000 lions in 200 breeding farms awaiting the gruesome fate of a canned hunt – a 50 percent increase compared to the number of captive lions in 2010. The hunters mainly come from the United States and European countries. Anyone can go and hunt lions in South Africa – a hunting license or proven hunting experience isn’t usually necessary. This means that many lions aren’t killed by the first shot, which results in them experiencing a slow and agonizing death. Many hunting associations across the globe condemn Canned Lion Hunting as unethical.


FOUR PAWS intends to present the petition to the South African government, who has remained inactive so far on the issue, in spring 2016. “We want to prompt the people in authority in South Africa to finally start acting. Existing laws rarely protect the animals and the powerful lion industry also deceives gullible volunteers” declared Pietsch. Volunteers often pay a lot of money to help raise lion cubs in breeding farms. Moreover, many tourists in South Africa visit the so-called “petting farms”, where they can touch the cubs and take photos with them. These farms often act under the pretense of wildlife conservation. Says Pietsch, “this is simply not true. Lions raised by hand cannot be successfully released into the wild.”


The design of the #RealTrophy campaign was created by the German advertising agency GGH Lowe. The agency also designed and successfully conducted various other campaigns for the international animal welfare organization, e.g. the “Furfree parade” and the German anniversary campaign “Roar for more humanity towards animals”.


YOUTUBE LINK #RealTrophy campaign:


FOUR PAWS petition against Canned Lion Hunting.


FOUR PAWS claims in detail here