Anyone who suffers
from arthritis knows how painful a disease it is. The pain is relentless—every
move can be excruciating. Elephants used in the circus are susceptible to
arthritis because of constant confinement and being forced to perform grueling
tricks over and over, facing punishment if they do not comply. Acclaimed
actor Cloris Leachman exposes the suffering of these arthritic elephants
in a shocking video for PETA.
and Sara—three elephants Ringling hauls from town to town chained
in cramped boxcars—exhibit serious lameness and stiffness. Nicole
and Karen also suffer from arthritis, and Sara, who is only 10 years old,
is well on her way to developing the disease. Ringling has ignored all recommendations
that Nicole be excluded from performing certain routines, and now she is
in such poor physical condition that experts insist that keeping her on
the road constitutes unnecessary cruelty. Karen is also on the road performing
grueling tricks, even after experts observed that she had deep, painful
abscesses on her unkempt feet and that she exhibited serious unnatural behavior.
Foot disorders and arthritis are the leading reasons for euthanasia in captive
"Instead of receiving treatment or even relief from their excruciating
pain, elephants with Ringling Bros. are poked, prodded, shocked, and beaten."
She continues, "They are forced to perform ridiculous circus tricks
like standing on their head or hind legs, which puts even more pressure
on their aching joints." Ringling has ignored all recommendations that
these ailing elephants be excluded from routines and continues to make them