Meet Karina, a compassionate (and extremely adorbs) kindergartner from Pennsylvania.

kid protesting the circus

Recently, while protesting a Shrine circus show with her mother, Natalie, in Pittsburgh, Karina saw trainers striking elephants with sharp metal-tipped bullhooks as they drove the animals into and out of the performance area. A friend of Natalie’s was able to capture the abuse on camera:


Circuses try to trick people into thinking that animals voluntarily stand on their heads, balance on balls, and jump through rings of fire, but in reality, animals used in circuses are beaten, electro-shocked, and whipped into submission by circus trainers.

Natalie and her friend sent PETA the video and photos they had taken, and when we heard about little Karina, we knew that she would be the perfect spokesperson for our circus campaign. But you don’t have to take my word for it—see for yourself!

Because Karina has a big heart for animals, PETA Kids is giving her a Hero for Elephants Award.

hero for elephants award

Seriously, just look at this cutie.

kid protesting the circus

Oh, and guess what? We used the evidence that Natalie and her friend gathered to file a complaint against Carson & Barnes, the exhibitor that supplied elephants to the Shrine circus, with the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Stay tuned for more on this story!

Looking for ways that YOU can help eles used in circuses, too? Well, look no further.

Speak up for Karen!


Feeling inspired by Karina’s story? Share it with everyone you know online!

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