Written by Michelle Kretzer
When the Liebel Family Circus
planned on doing a series of shows at National Guard armories in Arkansas, it
didn't plan on PETA. We wrote to Major General William D. Wofford of the
Arkansas National Guard and let him know that the U.S. Department of Agriculture
(USDA) recently formally charged the circus's owner, Hugo Liebel, with almost three dozen violations of the Animal Welfare Act.
National Guard wisely decided not to associate itself with cruelty to animals and canceled scheduled performances in four cities.
Liebel has a long history of animal abuse. His most recent USDA charges include
repeated failure to provide adequate veterinary care to Nosey, the poor old elephant
he uses in his shows, who has been suffering from a chronic skin condition and
unexplained rapid weight loss, among other ailments. The USDA complaint against
Liebel also includes multiple charges for illegally chaining Nosey by two legs
so tightly that she could neither lie down nor take more than a single step in
any direction. Liebel also faces charges for allowing a spider monkey to escape
and not recapturing him for nearly six weeks and for chaining a spider monkey
to a pony for more than an hour.
affidavit from a circus employee recounts Liebel's affinity for bullhooks and
electric prods and details one incident in which Nosey was staked by all four
legs and beaten with a bullhook by Liebel. Liebel also instructed other workers
to beat her with objects such as shovel handles and sledge hammers.
all circus performances using captive animals would become a history-book
horror story. But in the meantime, Congress is considering the Traveling Exotic Animal
which would require vast improvements for animals used in circuses. Please take
a moment to urge your representatives to pass this historic piece of
legislation. Then get everyone you know to do the same, for sake of elephants
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.
Follow PETA on Twitter!
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.