School is fun and all (right?), but it’s no secret that the best part is recess! There’s nothing like getting a break from class, stretching your legs, hanging out with friends, and having some fun. Now, imagine life without recess … that’s kinda what it’s like for elephants who are forced to perform in circuses and other cruel forms of “entertainment.”
Did you know that elephants are smart, thoughtful, and loving animals? In fact, they have the largest brains of any land animal! They care about each other and can become depressed when they are separated, often crying out for their lost friends or family members.
Elephants who are used for entertainment don’t get to do anything that’s natural and important to them, though. Because these gentle giants are so powerful, they are often torn away from their families when they’re just babies. Can you imagine what it would be like never to see your family again?
Circuses are one of the worst places for elephants, and trainers abuse them using electric shocks, whips, and sharp metal-tipped sticks called “bullhooks.” When the animals make a “mistake,” they may be beaten, yelled and cursed at, tied up with ropes, or chained for hours on end. Many elephants in circuses develop arthritis, foot infections, and other health problems, and these conditions may go untreated.
Remember: Elephants are used by the entertainment industry for one reason—to make money. If you want to stop this abuse, don’t go to circuses, say no to elephant rides, and don’t buy tickets to movies that use animals.