An Entertainment Abuses Article from All-Creatures.org



Captive Elephant Tourism

From PAWS Performing Animal Welfare Society
November 2023

People are too often unaware of the cruelty involved in captive elephant tourism, including rides, bathing elephants, petting, and taking close-up photos with them as well as the danger.

elephant rides

Sadly, many people have on their bucket list an elephant ride in a foreign country.

People are too often unaware of the cruelty involved in captive elephant tourism, including rides, bathing elephants, petting, and taking close-up photos with them as well as the danger.

Recently, a Utah couple barely survived an elephant ride in Thailand. They face a difficult recovery from injuries including a broken back and crush injuries. Earlier this year an elephant shattered the bones in a woman's arm as she stood with the animal for a photo.

The elephants suffer as well. They are violently trained, cruelly dominated, and often kept in poor conditions all so tourists can ride and interact with them.

PAWS never supports direct or close-up interactions between the public and elephants.

At the ARK 2000 sanctuary, even experienced caregivers do not share the same space with the elephants. There is always a protective barrier between them. Using positive reinforcement training and food rewards we consistently provide a full range of husbandry and veterinary care.

So what can you do to help end elephant interactions? Take the Pledge for Elephants:

  • Never ride an elephant in another country or at home.
  • Never pet, bathe, or participate in an up-close photo op with an elephant.
  • Never patronize places where elephants are made to perform tricks.

If you want to truly experience elephants, we recommend observation-only excursions in the wild where elephants live freely.


Return to Entertainment Abuses Articles