Massachusetts: Say no to using elephants for entertainment

Photo by Adam Peyman/HSI

With all that is known about the rich and varied lives of elephants, it is evident their use in circuses and other traveling shows brings nothing but misery and suffering. They are denied everything that is natural to them, poked and prodded with sharp and painful metal bullhooks, forced to perform ridiculous tricks and endure extreme confinement while chained in trucks and trailers for months of grueling travel. Now is the time for Massachusetts to put an end to these horrendous offenses.

Legislation filed by State Senator Kathleen O’Connor Ives and State Representative Lori Ehrlich would ban the use of elephants in circuses and traveling shows. The public hearing on this legislation was held on May 2, 2017, and, thankfully, H.418 was reported favorably. But H.418 still needs your support to pass.

As the public has become increasingly concerned about the plight of elephants, a growing number of states, counties and cities, including nine municipalities in Massachusetts, are passing important legislation to address the cruel treatment of elephants. When Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus announced that it would eliminate elephant acts from its shows, the decision was attributed in part to public sentiment and local laws against the use of elephants in circuses.

Please make a brief, polite phone call to urge your state representative to support H.418. Look up your representative's phone number. You can say, "As your constituent, I urge you to support H.418 to protect elephants from the cruelties of circuses and other traveling shows."

After your call, use the form below to send a follow-up message. Editing your message will help it stand out.

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Your Message


As your constituent, I am urging your support of H.418 to prohibit the use of elephants in circuses and other traveling shows.

These elephants are trained with painful punishment using sharp bullhooks, bullied to perform unnatural tricks and endure extreme confinement while chained in trucks and trailers for months at a time. Using elephants in traveling shows also poses serious public safety risks by bringing stressed and powerful wild animals into close proximity with circusgoers.

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This action alert is for U.S. residents. International advocates, please visit Humane Society International.

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