Rhode Island just took a huge stand against cruelty to animals by outlawing painful weapons called bullhooks.

peta2 bullhook

Bullhooks resemble fireplace pokers. Elephant trainers often sink the sharp hooks on one end deep into elephants’ ears, mouths, and other sensitive parts, where their skin is the thinnest, and swing these sharp weapons like baseball bats. Elephants learn to fear bullhooks at a very young age.

Baby elephant with bullhook.

Bullhooks are used to force elephants to perform dangerous, uncomfortable tricks, such as standing on their heads or on small platforms. Watch undercover video showing how elephants are “trained” just moments before going on stage:

What does the bullhook ban mean for elephants?

Once the ban is phased in, circuses that use elephants will essentially have to stay out of Rhode Island. Without bullhooks, circuses won’t be able to force elephants to perform any stupid, confusing tricks like standing on their heads or balancing on balls, so they’ll have no reason to haul elephants to the state inside cramped boxcars or trucks.

Elephant with circus trainer
© Amy Meyer 
What You Can Do

Contact us for materials for launching a campaign to get bullhooks banned in your area or for help with organizing a circus protest.

kim diana circus demo

Pledge never to go to a circus that uses animals and urge your friends and family to stay away, too. Remember: Every ticket purchased for a circus that uses animals goes directly to support the animals’ misery.

Spread the word! Share this post to let others know the good news and urge them never to go to a circus that uses animals.

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