Target: Carson & Barnes Circus owner and manager Geary Byrd
Goal: Put an end to the rampant abuse and neglect that animals endure at the Carson & Barnes Circus
The Carson & Barnes Traveling Circus has an over 30 year history of animal abuse and neglect. It has been cited by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) for numerous violations of the Animal Welfare Act for beating elephants with bullhooks, punching and stabbing animals, and failing to provide vital veterinary care to sick and injured animals. Most recently, the Carson & Barnes Circus, which is based in Hugo, Oklahoma, received a warning from the USDA for neglecting a llama with a puncture wound to its eye. It’s time to put an end to this legacy of cruelty once and for all.
According to a People for the Ethical Treatment of Animal (PETA) factsheet, “The USDA has cited Carson & Barnes Circus numerous times for failure to provide veterinary care and minimum space, for failure to provide shelter from the elements, for failure to maintain transport trailers, for inadequate ventilation, for unsound fencing that failed to protect spectators and animals, for rusty animal cages, for giving animals unclean water, and for failure to keep animal care records.” The first incident on record occurred as early as 1982 when five elephants tried to escape the horrific conditions of the Carson & Barnes Circus. Sadly, one of the elephants died as a result of the episode.
The Born Free Foundation, a UK based wildlife charity, states that the fear based training that animals endure while learning “tricks” results in “animals developing abnormal behaviors.” As proven by the Carson & Barnes Circus, many times these training techniques are cruel, abusive, and violent. Several circuses, including the New Shanghai Circus in Branson, Missouri and the Circus Center in San Francisco, California, are making the humane decision to perform without animals.
By signing the petition below, you will encourage Carson & Barnes Circus owner and manager Geary Byrd to stop abusing animals in the name of entertainment and instead only operate animal-free circus performances.
Dear Geary Byrd,
I was shocked to learn that the Carson & Barnes Circus once again received a warning from the USDA, this time for neglecting a llama with a punctured eye. For over 30 years, your circus has been cited for incidents including beating elephants with bullhooks, punching and stabbing animals and failing to provide vital veterinary care to sick and injured animals.
Perhaps you are unaware that many of the training techniques used in circuses cause animals physical and mental trauma. Several circuses have made the humane decision to perform without animals. I am asking you to take the compassionate step to end the history of abuse and neglect and only operate animal-free circus performances.
[Your Name Here]
Photo Credit: Liz Dawson c/o Geograph.org.uk via Wikimedia Commons