The Sad Elephant


About Circuses


Did you know?

  • Over Eighteen people have been killed and 89 others have been seriously injured by captive elephants since 1990. As a result, lawsuits totaling in the many millions have been filed.
  • Many "circus elephants" are carrying a strain of tuberculosis contagious to humans
  • Elephants are repeatedly beaten in order to train them. These intelligent social mammals often live their whole lives in travel trailers, sometimes in the blazing heat or the freezing cold. The majority of the time, they are chained by two feet, unable to take even one step forward or back.

Read a statement by the worlds most renowned Elephant experts concerning circuses. New

" It is our considered opinion that elephants should not be used in circuses."

Read the whole statement

Behind the Big Top:
The circus portrays itself in a fun, loving light. The truth behind that is the cruelty hundreds of animals must endure for human entertainment.
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Sad ElephantDue to the enormous size and strength of both African and Asian elephants, it is a fact that most trainers rely on chains and fear to make them obey. Typically the process starts with an elephant being beaten into submission at a very young age. Sadly, some elephants will spend a great deal of their lives in chains. The well-known Dumbo lived 20 years in "martingales," chains that ran from his tusks to his feet. In the wild, the life expectancy of elephants is generally the same as that of humans. In the circus, many elephants die prematurely from disease and the stress of confinement, for what?

Concern Begins WIth Compassion
What Can You Do?

The following page is designed to be a introductory resource for information about the side of Circuses which the companies that run these shows donīt want you to know about. It will constantly be under construction for a while and we will need your help to submit stories, pictures, and anything else that might help in this cause.

Interested in a Circus Background?

Circus of Abuse: The Lives Of Circus Elephants:
A circus elephants' daily life is spent, for the most part, in chains and confined boxcars. Contrary to what the circus industry says, they lead a miserable life.

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Circus of Abuse: When Elephants Act Out:
Elephants can sometimes be a public safety hazard, as witnessed by the numerous incidents in which circus elephants have been involved.

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Circus of Abuse: The Retirement Years:
When their performing years are over, there are only a few places elephants can go. Elephant Sanctuary is one such place in Tennessee.

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Circus of Abuse: Fair Treatment:
Circus animals are often portrayed as happy and healthy. However, they are often mistreated and severely abused. This is the first part in a four part series on the truth behind the circus. 

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Animal Attacks

Elephants in circuses are rebelling in attempts to escape their sad existence. Since 1990, elephants have killed at least 18 people and injured many more. In 1994, an elephant killed her trainer and injured 12 spectators before being gunned down by almost 100 bullets while running terrified through downtown Honolulu. In 1994, officer Blayne Doyle, who had to shoot 47 rounds into Janet, an elephant who charged out of the Great American Circus arena, noted: "I think these elephants are trying to tell us that zoos and circuses are not what God created them for. But we have not been listening.


Dick Gregory quoted on

    Martin Luther King Jr. taught me that the fight against oppression is never an easy one. It's even harder when you have no voice. For animals held captive in circuses, life consists of cramped cages, shackles, and daily beatings. There's no escape. They can't demand their freedom. Images like these bring only one word to mind: slavery. Be an abolitionist for the animals. Please don't go to the circus

Are you wondering about a particular circusesī record with animal cruelty?
Click here for a link to find out!


Note: A great deal of this information is taken ( in some cases word for word) from PETAīs Circuses.Com and HSUS (The Humane Society of the United States' Web Site). Please follow one of the many links for more information on circuses in general and how to help.

PETA Ringling Expose

Circus Elephants

For more information about Ringling Bros., please visit

PETA Circus Elephants

Ringling Bros. 3:58 by PETA

For more information about Ringling Bros., please visit

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