The Italian social justice and anti-animal cruelty group LAV created a highly controversial print ad in 2015 as an attempt to bring awareness to the epidemic that is animal cruelty. In this ad, a circus Tiger is being held on strings, depicting the idea that they are forced to do whatever owners make them do in circus. The line (an obvious play off of the expression ‘the show must go on’) tells readers that they should be standing up for animal rights, disallowing the continuation of Lions, Tigers, and Bears (oh my), among other animals, from being held against their will.
The advertising technique utilized in this print ad is called the Need To Nurture, an effective appeal due to its unique sell of animals being products that deserve better care, are more than just ‘puppets’, and how society as a whole should be treating animals as equal to humans.
The tagline at the bottom of the print as states that readers should “support animal-free circuses”. The picture associated with that tagline is highly effective due to the surprising restrictions on a wild animal, provoking a feeling of sorrow or possibly anger in the reader. The whole basis of the appeal Need To Nurture is to cause people to want to help those who are innocent or can’t help themselves, whether it be an infant child or an animal at a zoo. By painting a picture of a helpless Tiger, readers can make the connection that animals truly have no say in what happens to them.
To add on, the puppet strings attached to the Tiger only heighten readers emotional slate, as it makes us look like leaders to animals. What is so effective about the ad’s push towards nurturing is the visual. By causing readers to stop in their tracks and think “do I really want to let this keep happening” shines a spotlight on the animal cruelty issue while boosting publicity for LAV.
Tying everything together, the ad simply makes readers feel bad for circus animals, because through the words on the ad and the sad Tiger tied up, humans are portrayed as more than animals and deserve-worthy of more importance. This print ad makes readers long for a sense of equality with animals and humans.
When it comes to the potential impact of the messages sent in this ad, it is crystal clear that viewers are being exposed to the concept of animal cruelty and inequality amongst their human predecessors. By seeing such a direct, blatant ad that showcases balance not being present, viewers mindsets on human and animal equality is shook.