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Saving Lucy: PETA Sues City of Edmonton

Written by PETA | February 1, 2010

Today, PETA and Zoocheck Canada are officially initiating a lawsuit against the city of Edmonton, Alberta, over the cruel and apparently unlawful conditions under which Lucy, a solitary elephant at the Edmonton Valley Zoo, is forced to live.

 

kidssavelucy / CC
Lucy

 

Lucy’s health issues—which include upper respiratory problems, arthritis, obesity, and chronic foot ailments—are the result of the substandard conditions at Edmonton Valley Zoo and are further aggravated by the region’s frigid climate, which is inappropriate for an Asian elephant. Lucy has also been alone for the past two years, spends most of her time in a small barn, and exhibits behavior that indicates severe psychological distress. Even Dr. James Oosterhuis, the Valley Zoo’s own consultant, acknowledged that the zoo’s indoor facilities fail to meet the industry’s minimum standards.

Consultations with experts prove that Lucy’s life is at risk in Edmonton. Dr. William Keith Lindsay—a Canadian ecologist who has been actively involved in research on the ecology of elephants with the Amboseli Elephant Research Project in Kenya since 1977—is one of several experts who confirm that Lucy’s living conditions are unacceptable. Dr. Lindsay states, “It is abundantly clear that Lucy would benefit greatly from the company of other elephants.” Elephants live in close-knit families, and the females spend their entire lives in herds that include all their female relatives. The solitary life that Lucy lives prevents her from taking part in any of the social behaviors that are necessary for maintaining an elephant’s health.

Dr. Joyce Poole, an elephant biologist and ethologist who has spent more than 30 years studying elephant social behavior and communication states, “Lucy has spent much of her life standing on concrete in a small barn and doing very little of what an elephant needs [to] do to maintain good physical health and mental well being. The consequence is that she is a young elephant in an old body. This causes her real privation and suffering.”

We won’t rest until we see Lucy moved to a sanctuary. As we take the city to court, we urge you to take action to help Lucy find the freedom she deserves and to share this information with everyone you know. Keep checking back here for more updates.

Written by Logan Scherer

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  • SHERYL WEST says:

    LUCY HAS DONE HER “DUTY” FOR SUCH A LONG TIME AT THE ZOO LETS LET HER LIVE OUT HER REMAINING DAYS IN A ELEPHANT SANCTUARY. I BELIEVE THEY EXIST SOMEWHERE OUT THERE. ELEPHANTS ARE VERY SOCIAL CREATURES INSTEAD OF IN SOLITARY CONFINEMENT ON A CONCRETE PAD IN A FREEZING COLD CLIMATE. I LIVE IN EDMONTON AND AM A CANADIAN BUT WRONG IS WRONG!

  • Janice Taylor says:

    Unbelievable! And we call our selves civilised not a third world nation. This is a disgrace and the Canadian authorities should be ashamed of themselves……….Free Lucy immediatley into a safe and CARING enviroment to enjoy her remaining years at peace fingers xxd

  • carol says:

    this is just so wrong my garden is bigger than this poor animals pen. you should be ashamed of this cruelty

  • NICOLLE says:

    OBVIOUSLY LEGAL ACTION IS REQUIRED IN ORDER TO RESCUE LUCY FROM HER HIDEOUS ENVIRONMENT. THE ZOO WILL NOT SIMPLY RELEASE HER AS THAT WOULD BE ADMITTING THEIR WRONGDOING. SHE SHOULD BE RELEASED AND NURSED BACK TO HEALTH AT THE ELEPHANT SANCTUARY IN TENNESSEE. CASE CLOSED.

  • david says:

    …Dr. Lindsay the elephant has respiratory problems. Obviously company of other elephants would be nice but even I would not want to sit next to some guy wheezing their lungs out.

  • Mary Ann says:

    Free Lucy where? Send her back to Africa back to the wild? She wouldn’t last a week. Help the zoo or move her. Legal action only makes it more costly for children to go to zoos since the zoo is burdoned with the cost of legal fees. They either cut costscare or increase admission. Get it?

  • athena gerber says:

    Looks like the Canadians are doing well to shame themselves they have the seal slaughter and now imprisoned elephants. Maybe the government should sit and think about its animal policies. It is really shameful that humans are ‘supposed’ to be a superior race but have so little compassion and justice! Let the animals live!! Free Lucy and all the others like her……..

  • Lindsay O'Donnell says:

    Thank you Peta!! FINALLY SOMEONE IS TAKING LEGAL ACTION!!

  • sue v says:

    I hope this girl gets saved. thanks to all those who help.

  • joanne webb says:

    please please release this poor elephant this poor creature must feel dreadful would you like to live in these conditions.

  • Mandy C. says:

    Why is she not allowed out? Why is nt anyone keeping her company or allowing her to be with others?????? IT DOESNT MAKE ANY SENSE!!!!

  • Paul Davenport says:

    Its never right to keep an animal in such alien conditions specially such an intelagent one. The fect that this even got to this stage tells you everything you need to know about the country in questions ethics whitch are already quite tainted as we know.

  • Joan Burton says:

    Ok we all agree she needs out of there but how do we take action to get her out of there? What do we need to do. Anyone?

  • Ciara says:

    Aww im nearly crying over this! i hate these people who did this really hate it! If i could have one wish that would stay true forever it would be for all animals and people to be safe.FOREVER! FREE HER!!!!! FREE HER!!!!!!! FREE HER NOW!!!!!!!

  • Mary Ellen Skinner says:

    As a Canadian citizen as well as now a resident of the province of Alberta I am both sickened and disgusted with how this elephant has been and continues to be treated! This sad being has already given decades of service to this province I think it’s LONG overdue that we grant her freedom and let her live out the rest of her live in peace!

  • Sandra Tavaglione-Grickites says:

    I hope that the force is with PETA. If we could only see more well advertised victories maybe people will start seeing animals as living creatures not utensils created for our own designs.

  • Julia says:

    well done PETA for trying to help Lucy she should not be living like that you would think a civilised educated society would know better

  • Lydia Cypher says:

    I don’t know if she could go there or not but the Elephant Sanctuary in Tennessee could be a great place for her to be so much freer and yet protected in the company of other female elephants. Has this been suggested?

  • Elena says:

    Nice home for Lucy in Africa sun grass and fresh air!!!!Take her from There! PETA I belive in you!!!

  • Thijs says:

    lucy deserves to be free!!!!!!

  • Rachel says:

    This can’t be allowed to continue. I know some zoos do a good job at helping endagangered species but it’s cases like this that makes me hate zoos.

  • Pascale says:

    I really don’t like zoos and how they pretend to care for animals and their fake conservation purpose all they want to do is profit they don’t care about the animals. I remember seeing Mumba the solitary gorilla at the Granby zoo it was so sad

  • Tia Smith says:

    Lucy has suffered enough. We need to let her go so she has a chance to be healthier and happier.

  • Marea Gray says:

    This is way too sad… Lucy needs to be with her own kind.. To walk through grass and mud and play and join in the day to activities of other elephants.. There must be a beautiful sanctuary somewhere that can take dear Lucy? I just hope it isnt too late for her..

  • Jeff says:

    What is the matter with these people? Would they support displaying a human being in a solitary cage sick lonely and depressed? Then why an innocent elephant who should be in her native habitat enjoying the company of other elephants. Idiots oughta be ashamed of themselves.

  • NT says:

    Thank You!!! for speaking on Lucy’s behalf.

  • Cat says:

    This is heartbreaking and disgusting. Free her or get her in appropriate living conditions and friends. She needs companion!!

  • Mary says:

    Poor Lucy! This is outrageous. Thanks so much to Peta for trying to help this beautiful girl.

  • lauraine says:

    what i dont understand is why this has been going on for so long. elephants should not be in canada to start with. how about we move the owner to siberia in a speedo and wood crate????

  • Julie May says:

    One way or another Lucy is sick. I can’t understand why anyone would want a sick animal left in the street without treatment. She’s sick and getting care. Until she’s healthy it’s ridiculous to think about anything else. How would you like to be dying kicked out of the hospital perhaps because the beds aren’t semiprivate so the whole hospital is closing and to have no other help? Be realistic. She needs help and is getting it. When she’s well perhaps.

  • L Walker says:

    What is it with some of these Canadians? First…the seal slaughter and now Lucy. Someone there needs to be taken to the shed and forced to live and die as these beautifull creatures do. FREE LUCY NOW. STOP THE SEAL SLAUGHTER BOYCOT THE OLYMPICS.

  • Ryan says:

    As an Edmontonian I am embarrassed by this situation and hope whole heartedly that PETA and Zoo Check are successful with the lawsuit. I attended the demonstration with Bob Barker and was very pleased to see many others who also want to see Lucy moved to a sanctuary.

  • Glory says:

    Zoos are just not natural. they are no natural for the animal in it nor for the people that pay to see the spectacle. This is just another way to profit on inocent animals and it is not right they should be shut down.

  • DJ Dyer says:

    I Lucy! Zoos are horrible prisons and should all be abolished! Shame on the Edmonton zoo and other zoos circuses etc for keeping animals in these conditions. LET LUCY GO!!!

  • Sue says:

    Save Lucy send her to a nice warmer home with friends O

  • michelle says:

    My heart aches for Lucy.I hope she gets her miracle… To be removed from these conditions. 0

  • Laura says:

    Freeeeeeee!!!!!!!!! Lucy!!!!!!! Save the animals we people r more animals then them they deserve more than us. Sign a 12 year old puertorrican girl

  • kate says:

    Free Lucy! This brakes my heart!! Elephants are very very intelligen she must be suffereing be so lonely and depressed. And the conditions! my god! The entire Zoo should be shut down!!! If their doing this to her probably the other animals are not far behind..

  • laura whitworth says:

    I am sickened and heartbroken looking at Lucy in her hateful confines and the lack of conscious for her care… this magnificent creature needs to be freed immediately!!

  • LadyBrandi says:

    FREE LUCY!!!!!!!!! You wouldn’t want to be kept in a cage while people stare you when your suffering!!!!!!!

  • moo.lennon. says:

    all in favor of freeing Lucyin the sky with diamonds33say I!…I!!

  • Mark says:

    No ifs ands or buts zoos are absolutely evil. Prisons for animals.

  • NANCY says:

    YOU SHOULD ALSO CHECK A ZOO IN MONTERREY MEXICO IS CALLED “LA PASTORA” THOSE POOR ANIALS SHOULD NOT BE THERE!!!!!

  • kayla says:

    FREE LUCY!!!!!!

  • np says:

    release lucy!!

  • Marc Bélis says:

    Is this the elephant Bob Barker went to see? What a sad story.

  • kayla says:

    free lucy free lucy free lucy!!!!

  • Heather Dee Perry says:

    FREE LUCY THIS IS MY BIRThDAY WISH NO MORE OF THIS LeT hER gOOOOOOOOOOOOO ShE iS A GOOD gYRL FoR mY gRANDMA H+D+PL3 VE 3

  • Marnie says:

    Why don’t zoos get controled more frequently to prevent animals from living conditions that “fail to meet the industry’s minimum standards”? It took years…

  • Aneliese says:

    This infuriates me. Lucy needs to get the hell out that place she’s been in it for far too long. I’m also Canadian so this is hitting close to home.

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