Pizza Bear Granted Temporary Leave, But Hundreds of Animals Still Languishing in Grandview Aquarium

In some parts of the world, aquariums and zoos are still maintained as sanctuaries for rare species, research facilities for those that staff them, and educational and entertaining destinations for guests. The Grandview Aquarium, within a mall in Guangzhou, China, struggles to fit any of those criteria.

The aquarium first gained attention for housing a polar bear in an air-conditioned cell. Pictures and an article detailing the plight of the stifled bear, named “Pizza,” soon spread across the internet thanks to WeChat, and the polar bear was dubbed the “Saddest Bear in the World.”

Along with Pizza the polar bear, a white wolf, walruses, beluga whales, a whale shark, and several other aquatic animals are kept in quarters so disproportionately small that animal rights organizations have stepped in to effect changes.