An Australian influencer has gone viral on TikTok for sharing a tearful video describing her horrifying experience at a monkey show in Phuket, Thailand.
Rory Eliza (@roryeliza), an influencer with over 6.8 million followers on TikTok, uploaded her video on Friday. “Trigger warning,” she wrote in her video description. “Dont support this. Its called the monkey show in Phuket.”
In the nearly 3-minute video, Eliza explains that she wanted to hold a monkey during her trip to Thailand. As Eliza’s initial tour guide refused to direct her to a “monkey show,” the influencer found another tour guide willing to recommend one.
However, upon arriving at the monkey show, Eliza says was asked to pay before entering. “Only the person paying can go in,” she states.
“The horror on my face when I walked in to see all those monkeys,” Eliza describes through tears. “If you’re in Thailand, Phuket, don’t pay for this. Don’t support this. And I wish I knew before I walked in because I spent money supporting this cruelty.”
Talking through more tears, the influencer describes her experience holding a baby monkey.
“I held this baby monkey in my arms and the thing was absolutely petrified,” she cries.
Restrained by metal chains around its neck, the monkey can be seen shivering and curled up on the influencer’s lap. As its handler approaches, the baby animal desperately tries to grab onto Eliza.
“Every time the guy tried to take the baby monkey off of me, the baby just sat there screaming and hissing,” Eliza explains. “Every time he pulled the chain around this baby’s neck, the baby would just hug me tighter.”
“Please don’t support this,” the influencer pleads to her audience. “We need to end this animal cruelty in other countries, like Thailand. I don’t know where else they do it, but can I just say, don’t go and pay for these things.”
Refusing the monkey show’s request for more money to “care for the monkey” and support them, Eliza says she “walked out in absolute tears.”
Eliza’s tearful video quickly went viral on TikTok, garnering over 7.5 million views and 1.4 million likes as of this writing.
“Im so sorry,” one user wrote. “Thank you for speaking up.”
“That poor monkey looked like he was begging you for help… he felt safe with you take peace in that” another user commented.
“I can totally see why she’s so upset. That monkey was looking at her for protection and she was helpless,” one user sympathized.
However, many commenters also criticized Eliza for seeking out the monkey show in the first place, particularly after her first guide refused to take her.
“They told you no, and you went around till you found a place that’d say yes. Now you want to cry about animal cruelty,” one commenter wrote. “You ARE the problem.”
“Why did you think holding a monkey was an acceptable thing to do in the first place?” questioned another user.