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Great news: After
more than a year of pressure from PETA, the Animal Protection and Rescue League,
Animal Defenders International (ADI), and celebrities—including Charo and Switched at Birth
star Constance Marie—the Santa Ana Zoo in California has announced
that it will discontinue cruel and dangerous elephant rides.

This is a big deal
for the elephants, who are dominated and controlled
by bullhooks—barbaric training devices that resemble a fireplace poker—as can be
seen in video
from ADI that shows that trainers
from Have Trunk Will Travel, the company that provided elephant rides for the
zoo, beat and shocked elephants into submission. When not working, the
elephants spend much of their time chained by two legs, barely able to take a
step forward or backward.

Elephants are highly
intelligent, social, and curious animals who deserve better than being forced
to plod along in circles all day while being prodded by a bullhook for people’s
amusement. Elephants who are subjected to the constant threat of physical
punishment—like those who provided rides at the zoo—are also more prone to
dangerous and unpredictable behavior and present an unnecessary safety risk to
the public.

Please click here to send a thank-you note to Santa
Ana Mayor Miguel Pulido
and click here
to thank Gerardo Mouet
, the executive director of the city’s Parks, Recreation
and Community Services Agency, for making the compassionate decision to end the
elephant rides. Be sure to add a P.S. to Mr. Mouet to ask him to make the same
decision for the Orange County Fair since Have Trunk Will Travel provides the rides
there, too, and Mouet is on the fair’s board.  

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Article source: PETA Files

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