No Elephant in Decatur After PETA Appeal

Circus Performances in City Will Not Include Lame and Arthritic Elephant

For Immediate Release:
November 5, 2014

Contact:
David Perle 202-483-7382

Decatur, Texas – Just minutes after learning from PETA that elephant exhibitor Hugo Liebel—who has racked up nearly 200 citations for violating the federal Animal Welfare Act (AWA)—was reportedly planning to force a suffering elephant named Nosey to perform in the city today with the Family Fun Circus despite her evident painful lameness and arthritis, the city of Decatur informed the circus that it would not be allowed to exhibit Nosey. The Texas cities of Gainesville, Terrell, and Denton also banned Nosey from performing this week after hearing from PETA.

“By refusing to allow Hugo Liebel to force Nosey to perform, the city of Decatur has taken a stand against cruelty to animals, and PETA applauds city officials for doing so,” says PETA Foundation Deputy General Counsel Delcianna Winders. “PETA’s motto reads, in part, that ‘animals are not ours to use for entertainment,’ and the suffering that this arthritic elephant endures every time this man drags her in front of an audience shows why.”

Liebel’s history of violating the AWA includes chaining Nosey so tightly that she could barely move and repeatedly denying her adequate veterinary care. After reviewing 20 years’ worth of federal documents related to Nosey as well as a decade’s worth of photographs, an independent veterinarian and elephant expert called Nosey’s case “the worst, most prolonged, documented example of an uncorrected case of suffering and abuse in an elephant I have ever reviewed.”

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“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

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind