Save Ruperta the Sick and Starving Elephant From Impoverished Zoo

Target: Nicolas Maduro, President of Venezuela

Goal: Save Ruperta the elephant who is sick and starving to death at the underfunded Caricuao Zoo in Venezuela.

Venezuela is in the midst of a serious economic crisis and there have been several reports of starving zoo animals suffering as a result. Most recently, pictures of the 46-year-old African elephant, Ruperta, surfaced and showcased her protruding bones and sunken face. Ruperta lives at the Caricuao Zoo and the pictures have lead people to believe that she is starving to death.

Venezuelans started a food drive to help save Ruperta and El Universal (a major Venezuelan newspaper) reported that she is suffering from dehydration and diarrhea after the zoo was only able to feed her squash for a number of days in a row. Also according to reports, when individuals tried to bring food to the elephant their donations were turned away.

The government has denied that Ruperta is starving and is claiming that she was suffering from a stomach sickness that led to her losing weight. Venezuela’s National Institute of Parks said in a statement that “Ruperta the elephant is in stable condition and under the permanent care of experts.”

However, it is pretty clear that, as a result of the country’s serious economic crisis, many zoo animals are suffering. Ruperta is only the latest victim. Last year it was reported that around 50 animals died within six months at this zoo as a result of food shortages. Sign this petition to demand that Ruperta and other suffering animals at this zoo be relocated to a sanctuary that can afford to take proper care of them.


Dear President Nicolas Maduro,

There is no denying the seriousness of the economic crisis your country is undergoing. However, as a result, zoo animals are having to suffer the consequences. Denying that Ruperta the elephant currently living at the Caricuao Zoo, is starving is inhumane.

It was reported that last year that around 50 animals died within six months as a result of the zoo’s food shortages. People now fear that the same thing is currently happening to Ruperta.

Ruperta and any other suffering animals deserve to live somewhere that can afford to take care of them and the Caricuao Zoo is not that place. We encourage you to force the zoo to relocate their animals to a safer environment where they will no longer suffer the consequences of your country’s economic crisis.


[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Christian Rodriguez

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  1. Janet Daish says:

    Is there any update on these animals in the Zoo? Sure time is of the essence! It has been a few months now, are they still alive?

  2. I hope someone is helping these poor animals how can anyone watch this beautiful majestic animal starve to death what kind of hell hole is this it needs to be shut down where are the laws in this inhuman country


  4. Yes, I too would be very happy to have an update on this situation – has anything happened yet to help these poor creatures?

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