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UPDATE: Is Ringling Writing Its Own Inspections?

Written by Jennifer O'Connor | October 30, 2014

Update: Las Vegas is sweltering in the summer, but that doesn’t prevent Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus from keeping elephants in boxcars. PETA obtained a U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) inspection report—after filing a Freedom of Information Request—in which the inspector found that the temperature inside one boxcar reached as high as 95.3 degrees.

As if that weren’t disturbing enough, Ringling apparently somehow managed to convince the USDA to retract the citation and reissue a clean report. What friends in high places does Ringling have to manage that? This kind.

RBBB Elephants Jammed Into Boxcar

Originally posted on August 14, 2014:

Update: PETA has filed another complaint with the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) after learning that, in preparation for Ringling Bros.’ San Diego run, elephants traveling with the circus were apparently confined (and almost certainly chained) in boxcars from the time when they were loaded in Anaheim to when they were unloaded in San Diego—at least 32 and a half hours later. If true, this would mean that the elephants couldn’t all lie down at once, couldn’t turn around, and wouldn’t have had windows or fresh air. We’re asking the USDA to investigate this prolonged and stressful confinement and take appropriate enforcement action.

Originally posted on August 11, 2014:

PETA has received a photograph and video footage of elephants traveling with the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus as they were being walked to the arena in Anaheim, California, on July 31. The photograph, taken by a passerby, shows an elephant—likely Bonnie—with three long abrasions on her side. Ringling appears to have tried to cover up the wounds with a gray powder called “Wonder Dust,” which the circus uses to conceal wounds inflicted with bullhooks (weapons that resemble fireplace pokers with a sharp metal hook on one end).

Ringling Bros. Elephant with Abrasions on Side

PETA sent an urgent request to the U.S. Department of Agriculture calling on it to conduct an immediate inspection of the elephants with Ringling’s Blue Unit, determine the cause of the abrasions, and ensure that the elephant is receiving proper veterinary care.

Ringling’s long history of cruelty includes both abusing elephants with bullhooks and transporting elephants in unsafe transport enclosures, either of which may have caused this elephant’s injuries.

What You Can Do

Bullhooks are banned in Los Angeles and other municipalities. Contact PETA for materials on how to get a ban imposed in your area.

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  • Manel Dias says:

    This USDA looks like a pretty corrupted & very shady type of management. Why on earth these massive Animal abuse which has being reported over & over again & again in respect to the ways of this Ringling brothers circus subhumans ruthlessly treats them, YET the USDA has not taken any actions against these barbarians. Or the USDA so called authorities ARE THEY ALL BLIND? These helpless poor animals are being used and abused by the Ringling barbarians for the purpose of making money and it is always at the expense of the Animals. It is High Time to stand up with your back bones & STOP this massive Animal abuse within this evil circus. Give a voice to these innocent animals who are suffering in silent, & cannot speak for themselves. Need to expose these evil people subhumans who vilently abuse defenceless animals & charge them for Animal cruelty. USDA show the world that you care and you do the right thing for the sake of the animals.

  • Marjorie Skolnick says:

    it”s time for all to wake up….all living creatures deserve kindness and respect.

  • Judith Smith says:

    Each and every circus should be shut down they are cruel and evil

  • sylvia says:

    no more circuses it’s inhumane they belong in the wild they are not for entertainment they are abused and more and more people are becoming aware of this and it needs to be stopped

  • lovegan692 says:

    Torture of other sentient beings doesn’t bring joy!

  • Pat says:

    When will humans become humane? The media needs to cover these stories instead of all the stupid clips from reality tv. This torture of elephants and wildlife being used as props for entertainment is the Reality of cruelty that needs to be exposed.

  • Anita Young says:

    The best, most entertaining circus I ever saw was Billy Smarts – totally animal free – circus. The wonderful people acts, skills and talents, entertainment, some dressed as animals was most entertaining and exciting. Much better than any animal circus I saw when I was a child, which I did not enjoy and didn’t go again. The big top was filled for Billy Smarts animal free circus.

  • John Berg says:

    disgusting. don’t support these evil people mistreating beautiful animals.

  • Violet Hall says:

    Every Zoo and every circus should be banned all over the world. The USDA should be exposed to the courts and the videos of the animals they are turning their backs on. That is what it is when the corporations and big guys run the world. They need tobe shook up and pulled down off their high and mighty selves.

  • Darlene Norman says:

    Band the circus ,, it is nothing but abuse and you would have to be a stupid person to find that entertaining ,,, set the animals free !!!!!!

  • Barbara Mascaro says:

    It is sad what humans will do to make money, including abusing animals…Animals have feelings too!…I hope some day we can make a difference, and make others understand that we do not have the right to use these beautiful creatures for our own amusement…Until that day, I will pray for them all…

  • Deborah Schrowang says:

    I’ve come to HATE everything about a circus!

  • Any form of animals used for entertainment should be banned. How can anyone’s conscience support this horror?

  • Jeanette Parker says:

    Please release them now. No living being deserves to suffer. Have mercy.

  • Abhishek Shelar says:

    animals are not ours to be used as a entertainment source for us and for others. They have an equal right to live and enjoy their lives in their own style and manner ,on this earth. Its time that the Governments of all the nations should start making laws against using wildlife animals for an entertaiment purpose.

  • Dewi says:

    We don’t need to watch elephants nor animals do silly tricks. Its a suffering act that’s whats behind all these nonsense. How could you people be so cruel to these poor animals. How frustrating it is for them. Plus the claustrophobia they must endure. CAN YOU BAD PEOPLE LIVE IN THE SAME CONDITIONS? Cowards.

  • ann brown says:

    This has got to stop these poor babies all they want it to be free from all this,this so wrong what have done to deserve this nothing.so let’s us try and stop this,

  • Gina Sequeira says:

    A ticket to entertain a child buys severe torture of baby elephants daily with painful beatings with bull hooks, whips, and life in chains until they become neurotic like the adults. I cannot imagine anything more abusive. There is nothing fun about watching babies being tortured. Circuses are animal torture chambers, nothing more. NO sweet-natured elephant should live in chains, and suffer vicious beatings everyday to perform unnatural painful tricks to make people and their children laugh.

  • Pat Harris says:

    God did not put these wonderful animals on earth for us to abuse. And be cruel to.

  • Diane gibbs says:

    No animal deserves the mint treatment that Ringling Brothers conflicts on their animals why are they not prosecuted and banned from every city in the United States so they can’t be shut down I don’t understand why we allow this to happen

  • Haydee Pomar says:

    i AM SICK OF THE CIRCUSES ABUSING THE ANIMALS !!!!!!i HAVE BEEN TELLING MY ALL FIVE THOUSAND FRIENDS TO BOYCOTT CIRCUSES and let’s take them to jail for abuse !!!!

  • Victoria murray says:

    Boycott circuses

  • Smita says:

    No more circus !

  • Disgusting ! Never been never would !

  • Olga Garcia says:

    No animal deserve to be enslaved, it’s inhumane, elephants belong to the wild, they are not clowns to entertain people, an hour of diversion for people, but a life of misery and pain for these majestic creatures, animals don’t belong to circuses, please stop kidnapping them from their mothers.

  • ces magnifiques animaux n’ ont rien à faire dans un cirque !!! si l’ inspection demandé révèle des maltraitance , il faut sanctionner durement les fautifs et retirer ces animaux!!!

  • Sandy Demers says:

    I can’t afford to send any money now. I’m sorry. But the thought of those precious elephant’s in chains and locked up for 30 hrs. Makes me furious! It isn’t right at all. NO MORE CIRCUS!!!!!

  • I went to Ringling Barnaby & Bailey circus tonight: here’s what I wrote! to them: I went to one of your shows tonight. I really must say we enjoyed it, until WE saw the Elephants… they had burns on their backs ! it made me sick. I felt so sorry for them even for the lion’s & tigers. they didn’t look happy either .I think they better change I told them. those animals pay their wages! they make the circus money & pay their wages! . you might fool a lot of people but not like people like me. I love the circus. its fun but not fun for the animals. they show that they are not happy! so who are they trying to fool? US? I don’t think so… so please change your policy . so people like us can enjoy the circus. but after seeing the show tonight, I wont go anymore instead I’ll put my money into better use. & I will tell other people