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William Shatner Urges Release of Ailing Elephant

Written by PETA | September 8, 2009
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William Shatner

What has actor, singer, and author William Shatner (Canada’s triple threat) been up to since nabbing the Emmy for Boston Legal?

The “Priceline Negotiator” recently made a plea for the release of the Edmonton Zoo’s lonely, ailing elephant, Lucy.

In a letter to Edmonton Mayor Stephen Mandel, Mr. Shatner wrote, “I humbly ask you to allow Lucy to retire to better circumstances than at the Edmonton Zoo … she’s old, feeble, and many of us know how that feels.”

He joins pachyderm protectors around the world in rallying for Lucy’s release.

Two years ago, elephant expert Winnie Kiiru named the Edmonton Zoo the worst zoo in Canada for elephants and called for the closure of the exhibit. Edmonton’s frigid winter weather and the zoo’s policy of locking Lucy in the barn when the zoo is closed mean that she spends the majority of her time indoors. The short amount of time that Lucy is allowed outdoors is spent in a barren, dusty enclosure. Being forced to endure the cold and the forced immobility is fueling her arthritis and causing chronic foot and respiratory problems.

Please add your pleas to Mr. Shatner’s by writing to Mayor Mandel. Urge him to release Lucy to a sanctuary that can offer her hundreds of acres of diverse terrain, ponds for bathing, a more suitable climate, and the company of other elephants.

Written by Karin Bennett

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  • Serena Oh says:

    Please hurry before too late. The cold winter is here. Even through Lucy’s photo, I can see clearly Lucy is suffering from excruciating pain. Its unbearable to see. She looks so lonely and miserable. Torturing an innocent Lucy is totally senseless. Why the Moyer Can’t feel it?

  • rhonda boldra says:

    Lusy is being abusedmentally and physically. where are the animal rights people where Lucy lives. please save Lucy.

  • Elphaba says:

    WTF? Jade where does it say that? I couldn’t find any such thing did I miss it somehow?

  • Susan Pollak says:

    Regardless what her illness are or not this is just wrong. We take these beautiful animals away from their natural free habitat and locked her away into a very isolated and lonely place. Please allow her the right to be living in a sancutary where she can live out the rest of her years happy with other elephants and being well taking care off. Please have a heart. Thank you.

  • Jade says:

    Molar problems do not cause asthma which is a disease of the lungs. At least if you wish to support the cause at least get your health facts straight people.

  • Anita says:

    This is a difficult issue more because because we can all accept the fact that animals are better off in their natural habitat rather than in zoos. Of course we cannot shut down all zoos because society just won’t have it. This is beyond whether there should be elephants in Edmonton. This is just down to what do we do with Lucy now that she is here is old has arthritis a molar problem that causes breathing difficulties like asthma and would have a hard time travelling just the same. It seems that the zoo would not be entirely adverse to moving Lucy because they know she is old and would like to have her be around her own kind. The only problem is that she is used to humans and may miss them more than one would expect. Enough to be depressed and die just the same in the elephant sanctuary.

  • Anita says:

    This is such a hard issue especially because you can always find experts to support both sides of the issue. I especially wish that the forefront people in this debate were veterinarians who are qualified to make these decisions rather than politicians and celebrities.

  • m says:

    To Mr. Shatner and all the other great stars that use their voice to help all animals in danger. It renews my belief in celebs that all are not in it just for the fame and glorynow if we could get JLO to stop wearing and purchasing furs could we send her a tape before her children adapt the same lack of compassion for animals that have been murdered for their skinBut maybe she has changed her veiws since having children and expierencing that LIFE IS PRECIOUS NO MATTER WHOSE IT IS!!!! Bury your furs so the murdered animals can have their skin back!!!

  • Fran Hogan says:

    Thank you Mr. Shatner!!! It’s good to know people like you are aware of horrendous treatment of our animal friends.

  • Tracy Martin says:

    Thank you Mr. Shatner your involvement in this will help bring attention to Lucy’s plight.

  • elzaan says:

    That is so awful what theyre doing to poor lucy! i am totally behind william 4 getting her a new home!

  • lisa says:

    Everyone should follow in the steps of William Shatner and email Mayor Mandel i have done just so Lucy needs to be taken out of there immediatly this beautiful ageing animal deserves better than this she dos’nt deserve to be left there to die a lonely death.

  • jun says:

    be merciful pls. release lucy.animals are like us they have feelingsflesh like us..ty.

  • Michelle says:

    Wow what a classy man. I’m very impressed with Mr. Shatner

  • Katie says:

    This is so awesome..I have a new respect for him thank you!

  • Scott Bye says:

    I may not be a zoologist but I think that even I can figure out that Canada is probably not the greatest of places for an Elephant. Especially during the winter. Please do what is right for the animal. It sounds as if she has done her civic duty in the zoo now it is time for her to retire in peace.

  • Lena Glenholmes says:

    Wise words William! We all deserve our creature comforts especially as we get on a bit.have a heart let her retire with dignity.

  • Dr. Carole Edmonds says:

    Dear Mr. Mandel I respectfully am asking for the release of the Edmonton Zoo elephant Lucy to live out the remainder of her life in a more suitable environment. Elephants have very complex social structures not unlike humans. They feel hurt and grieve and keeping her alone is like solitary confinement. And what is her only crime? Being an elephant in captivity. It is also not fair to keep her in a cold climate totally wrong for her adaptation. An elephant rescue site would be much better suited to her needs with the proper climate and other elephants for her to bond with. Please answer to a Higher Power and do what is right for one of His own Sincerely Dr. Carole Edmonds

  • Carol wellhausen says:

    Please allow Lucy the dignity of living her last years with her own kind. Just the chance to stand by the side of ” one who knows” for even a day could lift the heart of an animal who has given patrons of your zoo years of education and enjoyment. Look outside the box of the financial world and give back to Lucy PLEASE! Sincerely CW

  • Rosemarie Calabro says:

    This is what I wrote to the Mayor and Councillors. Perhaps it will help you Dear Honorable Mayor Mandel I am writing on behalf of the elephant Lucy living at the Edmonton Valley Zoo. Please find it in your heart to allow a veterinarian from a sanctuary to examine Lucy and provide any necessary care so she can be safely moved to a sanctuary. She has given 29 years to the Edmonton Valley Zoo. Perhaps its time to give her something in return a chance to retire with others of her own species in a place we could consider a perfect retirement community if we were elephants. I understand that The Elephant Sanctuary in Tennessee would offer Lucy hundreds of acres ponds fresh vegetation and the company of other elephants. Thank you for taking the time to read my email. And thank you in advance for acting on Lucys behalf. Most respectfully Rosemarie Calabro

  • Susan Siniard says:

    Thank you SO Much Mr.Shatner! I am a big fan of yours and even BIGGER now. This poor elephant needs to live in a sanctuary to be live happily and with companions so she isn’t lonely.

  • Rebekah Jackson says:

    Thank you Bill Shatner! Perhaps with your name attached the zoo will pay attention to this issue and do right by Lucy. And you will never be uh older you will always be the best of both Capt Kirk and Denny Crane. Thank you for speaking up for Lucy. I hope you have the time to see this important issue through.

  • Brien Comerford says:

    William Shatner has also been a longtime advocate on behalf of horses.

  • Joel Espelosin says:

    There should be a petition for her removal?

  • Cray says:

    I meant Edmontonian a typo.

  • cray says:

    I truly hope that poor Lucy is released Some of my meat eating friends went to that zoo and they said that the exhibit was horrendous. A concerned Edontonian

  • Jane Kenyon Bell says:

    I just returned from Kenya and saw these magnificent creatures as God intended in the wildto make Lucy suffer this way is just another reason that being Canadian is embarrasment to me when it comes to the way we treat animals

  • Barbara Penley says:

    More reason to love this man

  • Diana B says:

    Thank you!

  • lesley williams says:

    Very eloquently put Mr Shatner wonderful that u took the time to try and make a change for Lucy. Lets hope it happens and people ditch their ego’s and give her some quality of life..

  • chii says:

    please release the innocent animals from all these torture..

  • Kairen Brooke-Anderson says:

    Thank you Captain Kirk! Always my hero!

  • sibylle müll says:

    Thank you! Elephants and me will never forget!

  • Candice says:

    here is a link to Zoocheck Canada’s face book page where you can send a letter asking for her release please! httpwww.facebook.compagesZoocheck118864269587?vapp133542302645

  • Kelly Guarnieri says:

    William Shatner great actor great man.

  • Candice says:

    Thank you! Thank you! from Edmontonians!

  • Elsa Annushka Nigro says:

    Thank you for helping Lucy x

  • BEV says:

    William Shatner We need more people in the world to be the animals voice more like you William Shatner keep being there their VOICE

  • Pamela Ernest says:

    Live long and prosper William Shatner! Mr. Spock would be proud…

  • Dolores Paskowski says:

    am supporting this effort!

  • Susan T says:

    Thank you Mr. Shatner! Not only are you one of my favorite actors but you are now one of my heroes too!

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