It’s No Circus For The Animals!

Stupid Pet Trick

Stupid Pet Trick

Today, Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus is planning to kick off its tour by showcasing dancing elephants to the public under the Brooklyn Bridge. What may seem cute and adorable to onlookers, is really not so cute and adorable at all. In fact, there is a very sad story of pain and heartbreak behind those elephant dances.

Elephants are not born dancing. As babies, they are forced to learn to dance and do other circus tricks by violent training methods. While they should still be with their mothers, baby elephants are beaten, hit, poked, prodded, and jabbed with sharp hooks until their spirits are broken. There is no method of training circus animals with use of positive reinforcement. The animals learn to perform because they become fearful of punishment and deprivation if they don’t.

Similarly, bears, tigers and other circus animals do not voluntarily ride bicycles, stand on their heads, balance balls or jump through rings of fire. Trainers use whips, tight collars, muzzles, electric prods, bullhooks, and other painful tools of the trade to “whip the animals into shape.”┬áThere is no governmental agency monitoring these training sessions. This is the reason why circuses continue to use these methods.

As if the torturous training methods are not enough, circus animals are often confined to cramped and filthy boxcars, cages, trailers and trucks for unfathomable amounts of time since there is constant travel with the circus. They are subject to heatstroke and dehydration, and they often don’t receive proper veterinary care.

These are only some of the many reasons why a circus may be “no circus for the animals.” So, the next time you are considering a family outing to the circus, think “Cirque du Soleil” or some other animal-free circus which is spectacular without the stupid pet tricks.

Please watch this video with Alec Baldwin depicting the sad story of circus elephants


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