A recent PETA US investigation has once again shown that Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus workers beat the animals they force to perform for unsuspecting audiences, just moments before the animals are ordered to go on stage.
The new investigation video shows workers, hidden from public view backstage, as they strike elephants on the head, face, ears, trunk and legs with a bullhook – a heavy, hard object resembling a fireplace poker with a sharp, steel hook on one end – and other abusive training tools. The investigator also documented dozens of occasions on which elephants and tigers were beaten and whipped on sensitive parts of their bodies, and sometimes on the face.
During the investigation, an elephant named Tonka, who has been with Ringling for 20 years, was repeatedly captured on video engaging in "stereotypic" behaviors indicative of severe psychological distress: swaying back and forth, bobbing her head and kicking one of her forelimbs up. Despite her condition, she was forced to perform for crowds night after night.
Ringling is now setting up European tour dates in Italy and Spain. We need you to take action now to help these elephants. Every minute that passes might mean another beating for Tonka and her companions. Please write to the venues at which Ringling is scheduled to perform and ask them to stop this circus cruelty from coming to town.