A recent ad by Dodge got the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, or PETA, rattling its cages.
The ad is a television spot promoting Dodge's "Tent Event" deals on the 2010 Charger, Journey and Grand Caravan. Like many recent Dodge commercials, the spot has a monotone narrator who explains the deal and states that the "event could not be more amazing." A chimpanzee actor enters the scene and depresses the bar on a detonator, followed by a confetti explosion. Sounds innocent? PETA seems to think otherwise.After several complaints from animal activists and PETA, Chrysler will alter the ad to not feature the animal. The group states that when primates are chosen to become animal actors, they are routinely separated from their mothers prematurely. PETA claims that animals in the entertainment industry are beaten while in training and are generally sold to "seedy roadside zoos" when they are too large or old."The ad was an innocent act only trying to be humorous," Kristin Starnes, head of Dodge brand communications told The Los Angeles Times. "In no way did the brand intend to promote any questionable practices."Dodge quickly responded to the complaints by removing the ad until it can produce a chimp-free version. Dodge also planned a print campaign featuring the primate, but has cancelled it for the time being."PETA applauds Dodge's decision to distance itself from cruelty to apes who are used and abused in entertainment," said PETA Executive Vice President Tracy Reiman. "Public attitudes about animals are changing for the better, so steering clear of ads that exploit animals is good for business too."Source: Los Angeles Times courtesy of Motor Trend