New PETA Billboard Urges Families to Stay Away From Circus World

For Immediate Release:
June 2, 2021

David Perle 202-483-7382

Baraboo, Wis. – Circus World is dragging its cruel elephant acts back for the summer, so PETA has just erected a new billboard showing a circus trainer jabbing a baby elephant with a bullhook—a weapon that resembles a fireplace poker with a sharp hook on one end, which is standard in the circus industry.

“With all that we know about elephants’ intelligence and their ability to feel pain and suffer, it’s unconscionable for circuses to keep bullying them into performing tricks,” says PETA Foundation Director of Captive Animal Law Enforcement Rachel Mathews. “PETA is calling on kind families to stay away from Circus World until it agrees to drop the animal acts, as many circuses already have.”

Circus World uses elephant acts provided by Carson & Barnes Circus, whose head trainer was caught on camera instructing other trainers to sink a bullhook into elephants’ flesh and twist it until they scream. The circus has racked up over 100 violations of the federal Animal Welfare Act, including while at Circus World, where it used an elephant who was so thin that her hip bones were protruding and failed to notice that another elephant was lame.

The billboard is located on Highway 136, south of South Boulevard, just over 2 miles from Circus World.

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to use for entertainment”—opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview. For more information, please visit or follow the group on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram.

For Media: Contact PETA's
Media Response Team.


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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“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