Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Baby Elephant's at Ringling's School of Cruelty

There is something that I hope you will all share with parents you know or keep in mind if you are a parent.. The circus is not all fun and games. Ringling Bros. circus claims that they train elephants through a reward system. Really? NO. Instead, they cruelly force baby elephants to become separated away from their mothers and use painful and violent ways to teach them tricks. Things like ropes, bullhooks, and electric shock prods are used. Here is a slideshow of what really happens at the training sessions.. click here.

The truth recently came out when Sam Haddock, a former elephant trainer for Ringling Bros., provided never before seen photos to PETA and the public to reveal the shocking truth about elephant  training. Sam Haddock had also contracted tuberculosis (TB) from the elephants and has died this year (2009). Elephants at Ringling are still being infected by TB and dying from the disease.. in addition to the life of mistreatment they endure.

 Caption: "Baby elephants are captured rodeo-style, roped around all four legs, tethered neck-to-neck to an 'anchor' elephant, and dragged from their mothers. From this point forward in their lives, every movement, every instinct, and every natural behavior is subjected to suppression and discipline at the whim of the trainer."

 Caption: "Once pulled from their mothers, baby elephants are restrained by four legs on a concrete flour in a barn for up to 23 hours a day to break their spirits and are never allowed to play outdoors. Chaining a curious and energetic baby elephant for such lengthy periods is psychologically devastating."

Caption: "'Training techniques used by Gary Jacobson include a lot of manpower, brute force, electricity, and a savage disposition.'--Sam Haddock"

 Caption: "'The bullhook is designed for one purpose and one purpose only: to inflict pain and punishment. I should know. I used to make them. I built them to where you can't break them, no matter how hard you hit the elephant.'-- Sam Haddock"

 Here is a video of Sam Haddock telling the story of being a Ringling elephant trainer:

Please, share the word and knowledge about circuses.


  1. I was just reading this article on peta's website yesterday :'(
    I used to go to circuses when I was a lot younger and it was always cute to see animals do these tricks but at this expense... no thank you :(

  2. hi karen! yah, i missed you and reading through your blog =) oh my, it breaks my heart to see these little elephants being abused just like that, all for money and fame. i really hate how people can be greedy. Our country has no elephants (maybe a single old elephant in the national zoo), so I havent really seen one in real life. but from how these pictures and your words describe the scenario, it's heartbreaking. i grew up not liking to watch animal tricks in the carnivals because my parents are against animal cruelty. at an early age, they taught me not to enjoy going to those shows or even patronize them. I really cant understand how people could enjoy themselves not even having a cinch of empathy for these helpless creatures.