Written by Michelle Kretzer
Update: When the plan to hire a Russian cargo jet to
take the Toronto Zoo's three elephants to a Performing Animal Welfare Society sanctuary
didn't work out, the Royal Canadian Air Force stepped up. Now, as soon as
Defence Minister Peter Mackay gives the thumbs-up, Toka, Thika, and Iringa will
be flying high courtesy of a C-17 transport aircraft and a military endeavour
dubbed "Operation Dumbo Drop."
The following was originally published on November 29, 2012:
It could be only a matter of days until the Toronto Zoo's three captive elephants, Toka, Thika, and Iringa, let the frozen Canadian ground fade into the distance as they set off for their new home: the Performing Animal Welfare Society (PAWS) sanctuary in sunny California. After a long campaign by Zoocheck Canada, PETA members, and the compassionate members of the Toronto City Council, the trio will trade their zoo enclosure for acres of varied natural terrain, lakes to bathe in, heated barns, and even therapeutic whirlpool baths. Although the elephants' tale has a storybook ending, their journey to freedom certainly wasn't without conflict.
jmbone | cc by 2.0
The Long Road Home
When the Toronto Zoo, under pressure from Bob Barker, Zoocheck Canada, and PETA, initially agreed to release its captive elephants, it was determined to simply ship them to another decrepit zoo. But the Toronto City Council sided with animal advocates and voted for the gentle giants to be retired to PAWS instead.
Then it seemed as though one of the elephants' foot ailments might make the 40-hour drive too dangerous. So animal advocate extraordinaire Bob Barker stepped up and provided the trio with their own "Elephant Force One" of sorts, a private plane that will quickly whisk them to their new home. The Toronto Zoo then raised concerns about the potential for tuberculosis at PAWS, but an independent infectious-disease report determined that the facility was safe. Once again, the Toronto City Council voted, and once again, it resoundingly insisted that the elephants be sent to PAWS immediately.
A Tale of Two Cities
The Toronto City Council also said in its final motion on Toka, Thika, and Iringa that it feels that Edmonton, Alberta's, Valley Zoo should allow the zoo's lonely elephant, Lucy, to retire to PAWS as well. Because elephants are ill-equipped to tolerate frigid weather, Lucy is forced to spend the winter months confined to a small barn. Our lawsuit to free Lucy did not succeed despite the wonderful comments of one judge who felt Lucy should be free but who could not persuade the other judges on the panel. Lucy hasn't had the company of any other elephant in four long years. But Zoocheck Canada and PETA are determined to win her freedom, and Bob Barker is advocating for her with all his might.
What You Can Do
Please join us in asking Edmonton officials to give Lucy the peaceful retirement that she so deserves.
Written by Heather Faraid Drennan
Update: Animal friend and philanthropist Bob Barker is paying the entire cost of shipping Toka, Thika, and Iringa from Toronto to the PAWS sanctuary in California.
The following was originally posted on November 25, 2011:
To thank the three members of the Toronto City Council who spearheaded the vote to send the three elephants at the Toronto Zoo to a sanctuary, we sent them each a box of vegan chocolates and a Compassionate Legislator Award certificate. The City Council voted 31 to 4 to allow Iringa, Toka, and Thika to leave the freezing Canadian winters behind and spend the rest of their days roaming with other retired elephants at California's spacious Performing Animal Welfare Society (PAWS) sanctuary.
Elephants in Canadian zoos—including Lucy, the lone elephant in the Edmonton Zoo—spend much of their time indoors since they cannot tolerate the winter cold and snow. They often suffer from arthritis and other painful ailments as a result of the lack of exercise and standing on hard surfaces for prolonged periods. While the compassionate city councillors recognized the need to send the three Toronto elephants to a sanctuary, zoo officials were battling to send Iringa, Toka, and Thika to another zoo. But last night the zoo voted to send the three elephants to PAWS.
Please click here to send a polite email to the Toronto Zoo thanking them for their compassionate decision to send Iringa, Toka and Thika to the PAWS sanctuary.
Bikinis in December? Sure.
Eye blacks with garters? Why not?
Fur? What, are you crazy?
The Lingerie Football League's
took to the streets yesterday to call "foul" on fur.
Courtesy of Dave B
The ladies braved the
chilly temps to show Torontonians that football players can take a beating, but
that furry animals
shouldn't have to. Unless someone was cruisin' for a bruisin', my bet is the
shoppers steered clear of fur.
Written by PETA
To encourage Canadians to celebrate a cruelty-free Thanksgiving, sexy PETA "pilgrims" landed at Toronto's Old City Hall for a festive Tofurky giveaway. Thankful Torontonians gobbled up the demonstration—literally. The pilgrims handed out 50 delicious, meat-free Tofurky roasts in less than five minutes!
Turkeys are intelligent, affectionate animals, so please have the "grace" to leave them off the table. Remember: If you wouldn't eat your dog, don't eat a turkey.
Written by Michelle Sherrow
PETA's newest sexy mascot, a "cow," teamed up with our lovely "leopard" and "tiger" to spread the news to Toronto Fashion Week attendees that animal prints are in style but leather, suede, and other animal skins are always vile.
Our brazen beauties were joined by students, one of whom brought her dad—and the caring crew grew as passersby joined in to help get the word out. There was also some unexpected action—as a photographer from the Toronto Sun drew his camera, security officers nearly put up their fists in an effort to stop the media from taking photos. Luckily, we managed to snap some shots:
Thanks to everyone who participated. May they be your inspiration to take action!
Written by Karin Bennett
Being shipped over great distances to slaughter with no food or water is agonizing enough, but a reckless driver recently overturned a transport truck carrying 235 pigs, killing 74 of them outright and leaving seven others so severely mangled that police and workers killed them on-site to put them out of their misery. Many pigs suffered terrible injuries and trauma when they were thrown onto an expressway near Toronto. PETA has sent a letter asking Ontario authorities to further investigate and, if the evident warrants, charge the driver—who was allegedly speeding when he lost control of the truck—with cruelty to animals in addition to reckless driving, the existing charge. The pork industry's careless drivers must be held accountable for the suffering and horrific deaths that they cause. Please read about our earlier cases with Smithfield Foods truck accidents.
In the meantime, you can help save other pigs from a horrible fate by urging everyone you know not to eat these sensitive, intelligent animals.
Written by Heather Moore
Oops—I meant to say "Parade."
OK, so maybe that pun made you wince, but the photos from Toronto's first annual Veggie Pride Parade will make you beam! PETA's own Chris P. Carrot, Lettuce Ladies, and "seal" joined hundreds of revelers who encouraged curious onlookers to help animals, their own health, and the planet by going vegan.
(No more puns this week. I promise.)
Written by Karin Bennett
A Christmas gift just isn't a Christmas gift if it's not sealed with a kiss, which is why our snuggly seal jumped aboard a float at Toronto's Santa Claus Parade:
Follow the lead of Santa's surprise helper and urge Prime Minister Harper to end the seal slaughter.
Written by Logan Scherer
I imagine this is what a certain fur hag might look like on a "good" day.
PETA's "Grim Reapers" recently greeted tourists at a crowded tour-bus stop in Toronto to reveal frightening facts about Canada's shame: the cruel slaughter of baby seals for their fur. Their scary outfits didn't stop tourists from high-fiving them—and tour bus operators were eager to point out our demonstrators to their passengers.
I'm dying to know: Which fugly fur wearer does our "Grim Reaper" most remind you of?
you have a general question for PETA and would like a response, please e-mail Info@peta.org. If you need to report cruelty to
an animal, please click
here. If you are reporting an animal in imminent danger and know where to find the
animal and if the abuse is taking place right now, please call your local
police department. If the police are unresponsive, please call PETA
immediately at 757-622-7382 and press 2.
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Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights? Read more.