Take Part in an International Effort to Help Elephants in Zoos

In Defense of Animals has created an international campaign to bring attention to the sad lives that elephants in zoos endure.

The first International Day of Action for Elephants in Zoos (IDAEZ) will take place on Saturday, June 20th and will involve elephant lovers from around the globe holding demonstrations at their nearest zoos to educate the public about why elephants don’t belong there.

According to IDA, “Elephants are highly intelligent, complex and self-aware individuals who have evolved for long distance living. In the wild they range tens of miles a day, live in large, tight-knit family groups, and communicate with one another at great distances. Yet zoos keep elephants in tiny exhibits of a few acres or less, where lack of movement and standing on hard surfaces cause painful foot infections and arthritis, the leading causes of euthanasia in captive-held elephants. The stress and boredom typical of intensive confinement results in abnormal behaviors such as repetitive swaying and head bobbing.”

Elephant experts agree that zoos simply can’t provide the conditions that they need to be happy and healthy. Studies have also shown that elephants don’t do as well in captivity as other animals, as we saw with Billy, the lone Asian elephant at the LA Zoo, who unfortunately lost the battle that would enable him to go live in a sanctuary.

Elephants in zoos also have much shorter life spans than their wild counterparts. In zoos, female Asian elephants have an average lifespan of 18.9 years, while wild elephants live to an average of 41.7 years.

IDA suggests the following ways to help:

Coordinate an event. Submit your information here, and IDA will post it on their web site so others can join you on June 20 and help make your city’s IDAEZ event a huge success.

Join an Event. Check out IDA’s events listing page to locate one near you (be sure to visit more than once since IDA will be adding more events up until June 20).

Bring a friend or two to an IDAEZ event. Share information about the elephants’ plight with your family, friends and colleagues.

Hold an elephant awareness party. If you don’t live near a zoo that holds elephants but are passionate about taking action on June 20, hold an elephant party to raise awareness and donations for IDA’s elephant campaign.

Visit helpelephants.com for more information and then please sign the petition protesting the treatment of elephants living in under equally heartbreaking circumstances: the Ringling Bros. Circus.


creative commons


Mary Dee
Mary Dee8 years ago

i personally believe all circus should be closed down, i would never go to a circus,or allow my children to see animals perform tricks for human entertainment, it is disgusting, heartbreaking, and they are not happy, would you be? caged up all the time, and when your let out of your cage you have to perform tricks, otherwise you would be beaten or abused, no of course not, so why do it to our beautfily animals, SHUT ALL CIRCUS`S DOWN FOR GOOD..

Samuel Crouch
Samuel Crouch8 years ago

I've got nothing against zoos in general, I personally think them beneficial to animal welfare and raising animal awareness, but I never realised that captivity cut elephant life expectancy in half, or that the hard floor put the animals in pain. You've convinced me! Elephants are magnificent, and need protecting. You have my support.>:|

lorii He
lorii He8 years ago

animals ar not to us to be showed but there are diferences from a zoo yo another i wish all where the animals loose and the humans in cars not to harm them any way they sould be free and hunting do not exist and to decide betwin a zoo and a circus maybe you think that can not happen it can only a month ago i wish shw will be ok and get her a company

lorii He
lorii He8 years ago

NO Elephants and animnals are not to be showed maybe this is the only way persons get to know this animals there are some zoo that have the animals loose that is better but i you have to decide betwing a zoo and a circus maybe you think that can not happen it can only a month ago she is in the zoo

Lynne T.
Lynne T8 years ago

Nancy can you be a bit more specific? What animals are killed and for what reasons at Norfolk VA site? If it is terminally ill animals or animals that are in danger of spending the rest of lives in cages because they cannot find a home it does put a different slant on it! Animals are killed by vets for the same reasons so do you suggest we steer clear of them too?

Eric Expeditionary
Eric Gilmartin8 years ago

Big, big elephant lover here, saying this sounds (at first blush) like an excellent idea. They're at least dog or cat level in terms of their intelligence, possibly even higher, and thus, aren't fit to be locked up on display for us, I would guess.

Nancy M.
Nancy M8 years ago

Care 2 might want to think twice about buddying up with PETA, an organization that has no problems killing animals at it's Norfolk VA site. There are better ways to help elephants than giving money ti PETa.

Barbcat Knight
Barb K8 years ago

Anytime elephants are taken away from their natural habitat and forced to entertain audiences in circuses or forced to walk on concrete floors in zoos, is inhumane and there needs to be a law that forbids this! The Elephant Sanctuary in Tenn. is HEAVEN for elephants who've been abused and seperated from their families. They treat all the elephants like Queens and Kings at the Elephant Sanctuary. Wish every elephant could go there.

Melissa Wilcox
Melissa Wilcox8 years ago

When you hear about all the issues of animal cruelty, it makes me wonder who the REAL "beasts" are...

Jennifer Ppopoli
Jennifer Ppopoli8 years ago

People who are cruel with our baby brothers and sisters (animals) should be in a cage forever...never trust in someone who does not like animals or nature!!!!!!!!!!!!!!