Rescue Circus Elephants in Norway

Target: Endre Skjørestad, Chairman of the Financial Supervisory Authority of Norway; Jens Stoltenberg, Prime Minister of Norway

Goal: Protect circus elephants from animal abuse

Circus elephants in Norway experience lifelong abuse and bondage. Many of today’s working circus elephants were captured from the wild while very young, separated from their families, and forced into circus training that destroys their bodies and shortens their lives.

According to Inge Sellevag in her article “Baba’s World,” a circus in Germany bought Baba, a female Indian elephant, in 1975. Baba was captured from the wild at age five, according to a European Elephant Group survey. Like other young circus elephants, Baba had to wear white bands around her legs to protect her ankles from the rigors of performing. Joint damage is common among circus elephants, but sometimes these bands are used simply to hide scars gained after years of circus bondage. Several times in the last few years, Baba has knowingly refused to obey commands during performances, leading animal rights advocates to believe that she is rebelling against a lifetime of mistreatment. This month, Baba began her third year at the Norway Cirkus Merano. She is traveling alone with the Cirkus, even though it is widely-known that elephants only thrive in the company of packs.

In 2002, Baba’s close friend Jenny, another circus elephant, collapsed and died in Germany while traveling with Circus Barelli. Jenny suffered from inflammation of the jaw, probably because she was transported around Europe in chains. At her death, she was emaciated and weak. Her elephant friends had clearly been worried about her, refusing to leave her side during veterinary visits. Another elephant traveling on the same tour, an African named Lubni, had a deformed hind leg due to a knee injury she sustained while practicing her circus routine. Before being transported to a zoo, Lubni also lived most of her life in chains, accused of being “too aggressive.”

Ask leaders in Norway to rescue abused circus elephants, transport them to elephant sanctuaries, and demand stricter punishments for those who harm elephants in captivity.


Dear Chairman Skjørestad and Minister Stoltenberg,

Elephant abuse has run rampant in Norwegian circuses over the last several decades. Veterinarians attest to the fact that circus elephants experience injury and rapid joint deterioration from dangerous performance training, scarring and inflammation from being transported in chains, and psychological trauma from traveling alone without an elephant pack so necessary to the species’ mental health.

Baba of Cirkus Merano, an Indian elephant, has lived in bondage for nearly 40 years. Her closest companion, Jenny, collapsed and died while traveling with Circus Barelli in 2002. Lubni, another elephant who traveled with Baba over the years, suffered leg deformity from overzealous training. Baba now travels completely alone, the only elephant in Cirkus Merano, and witnesses say she is disobeying her masters more often now, despite years of training. Animal rights advocates believe this is her way of rebelling against trainers.

Please rescue these troubled creatures from their abusers and send them to animal sanctuaries. I also ask that you enforce stricter punishments on trainers who abuse circus animals.


[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: AlejandroLinaresGarcia via Wikimedia Commons

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  1. Joyce Miniotas says:

    Stop the cruelty!

  2. J Davidson says:

    Elephants as well as all animals do not belong in circuses and/or any entertainment. This is a primitive, antiquated, outdated practice that must be abolished now. Animals are living, sentient beings who deserve our utmost respect and kindness.

  3. there are much better circuses that are all human they make the choice of loving their jobs of entertaining so u know u don’t have to go to an animal circus there’s much better entertainment out there use your imagination n enjoy fun not torture!!!!!!!

  4. jeannette marriott says:

    These elephants and other animals that are in circus’s should never have been there in the first place.The abuse that happens to then when “so called training is nothing short of abuse”
    The time has come for this so called Entertainment to be stopped, and consigned to the history books where it belongs.No animal should be subjected to abuse and neglect.Goverments all over the world need to say “NO MORE”

  5. Elephants do not belong in circuses. In the United States more and more people are not going to a circus because of the abuse that elephants suffer daily. It is time for humans to send animals like Baba to a sanctuary where Baba can live out the remaining days with others like herself. We all need to send this petition to ten other people and ask that they send it to others. Hopefully, they smarten up and realize that this has to stop.

  6. Animals belong IN THE WILD. PERIOD. Its abuse and cruelty that should be punished NOW.

  7. Please sign the petition and forward it to your e-mail friends to do the same. This is one way we can try to stop the abuse!

  8. Cheryl Murray says:

    Please boycott every circus. This is the only way to stop this.

  9. Pinke Andersson says:

    I can’t understand this at all!! How is it even possible,that Norge still can have these poor elephants and use them as show-and circus animals??-and 40 years!!!Crying out loud!
    Let these poor animals retire and go the sanctuary,they have done their part of money collecting to you!
    Having them is against everything I ever thought about you guys in Norway!! Fair and friendly!!Maybe…but not to the elephants,as we see.
    Ni får nog skämmas för det här!

  10. CARLOS MENDOZA says:


  11. Terry mcgregor says:

    All circuses should be abolished ,no one likes them anymore because of the cruelty

  12. How stupid do you have to be to patronize the circus ? With all that we know about intelligence of Elephants and their ability to create strong family bonds, why on earth would they want to perform stupid meaningless tricks ?

  13. Few people have any idea how much worse the abuse is than they ever imagined. This mercilessless practice of evil must be wiped off the face of the earth. It could easily be outlawed but no politicians have the balls to end it because they are weasel, feckless cowards.

  14. I just love animals! And another news… I just found out that Manila Zoo has a cute elephant named Mali, and she is the only elephant in the Philippines! She has lived there for almost all of her lives, for more than 30 years. The zoo should feel like her sweet and cozy home now. But then, I read some articles in, and I noticed that Mali is in fact sad and lonely! Look at her here: She is like a prisoner, who cannot spend her days with her friends, roam in vast territories, and have delicious adequate food! She even suffers from foot problems. Why does she deserve this? 🙁 Please Help Her!

  15. When you love animals you will do anything for them. It is obvious that the circus has only one thing it cares about and that is money. Those of us who love animals need to continue to advocate for them and not give up even when we feel it is us against evil.

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