Take a Stand for Circus Elephants

Everyone love the circus—the fun environment, the smell of popcorn, and the roar of the lions all make for a unique and exciting experience. But while it may be entertaining, are we supporting animal cruelty by going to and enjoying the circus? Unfortunately, yes.

Animals in the circus spend their lives on the road, moving from town to town, locked in tiny cages or trucks for days at a time. Training is even worse—physical punishment with bull hooks, whips, electrical prods, and other devices is used to cause pain and fear in the animals, forcing them to perform against their will.

The plight of elephants in circuses is especially cruel. Elephants are complex, intelligent creatures that show a wide variety of emotions; they are known to use tools and mourn their dead. In the wild, they are on the move for at least eighteen hours a day. Unfortunately, in circuses, elephants have been known to display neurotic behavior, perform unnatural and potentially harmful tricks, suffer from foot and joint disease, and live in their own excrement. They are also often exposed to tuberculosis because of the cramped quarters they live in.

Most of the elephants performing today were captured from the wild, where they usually display close family bonds. Chances are, they were shipped to the United States when they were very young.

It doesn’t have to be this way. Here are 5 ways you can help:

  1. Do not support the circus! This is the best way to help. Teach your children to love and respect animals by taking them to an animal-free circus or some other form of entertainment.
  2. Educate your friends and family.  Tell them about the cruelty of the circus, and encourage them not to attend.
  3. Contact state and town officials and ask them to ban all circuses that use animals. Many officials love animals and will want to make that change.
  4. Support conservation programs. Instead of watching animals in the circus for entertainment, try saving them! There are many organizations out there dedicated to helping wildlife.
  5. Post videos. Try posting videos, pictures, or other information on your social media profiles that highlights the plight of animals in the circus and encourages others to get involved.

No animal should have to suffer for our entertainment, so take a stand for elephants and other animals like them that are facing cruelty in the circus.

Though only fifteen years old, Andrew Puccetti has already shown immense dedication and passion for the well-being of animals. Every other week Andrew will be here talking about the relationship between young people and animal rights–how they can make a difference, how they are already making a difference, and how important it is for kids to continue the fight for our animal companions. Learn about Andrew’s non-profit organization Live Life Humane and check out his blog!

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