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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.