In 1994, an elephant named Tyke gave her last circus performance. By the time the dust settled, a trainer was dead, 13 people were injured, and Tyke herself had been shot almost 100 times and killed.
Today, circuses are still abusing animals and driving them to the brink. In dozens of dangerous incidents since 2000, elephants have escaped from circuses, run through streets, crashed into buildings, attacked members of the public, and killed and injured handlers.
It’s no surprise that these animals lash out. Circuses use violence, intimidation, and extreme confinement to force elephants to perform inane tricks. These cruel training techniques are used to break elephants’ spirits when they’re only babies, and they mark the beginning of a life in which everything that is natural and important to these sensitive, intelligent animals is taken away from them.