An undercover investigation by PETA India and Animal Welfare Network Nepal (AWNN) reveals that the training of elephants by the Nepalese authorities is cruel and that humane training methods -although introduced in the past- are hardly being implemented.
So-called elephant “joyrides” are anything but joyful for the elephants who are forced to give them. In reality the elephants are physically and emotionally abused every step of the way. The ritualized “training” sessions leave the elephants badly injured and traumatized
Watch this undercover video footage of elephant training at the government’s Sauraha based Elephant Breeding Center:
|Punti is left injured and traumatized after training
When they are just 2 years old, baby elephants are torn away from their loving mothers and tied up out of reach. The frantic babies cry and struggle for days to reach their mothers, who are also tethered. Elephant calves are restrained during training for as long as 14 hours at a time with ropes that cause painful burns and with heavy chains.
Over and over again, calves are put through terrifying “desensitisation” sessions, in which trainers tie the elephants tightly to a pole, surround them, startle them with loud noises, hit them, prod them with sticks and wave flaming torches at them – often singeing the elephants’ skin.
Trainers routinely pierce the animals’ sensitive ears and yank on them with hooks in order to force elephants to walk a certain way. To control the elephants, restraints studded with iron nails, which dig into elephants’ skin and cause infections, are used on their feet. Barbed shackles are also frequently placed around the elephants’ legs during rides, with the other end of the shackles attached to the saddle so that riders can punish the elephants for any misstep. Trainers routinely beat elephants on the head with sticks to punish them for “mistakes,” leaving many elephants with open wounds.
|A chain with iron nails poke into the calf’s skin
The Nepal government and tourism entrepreneurs need to understand that inhumane training will give Nepal’s safari industry a bad name and ultimately does not improve safety conditions. Evicence based humane training methods avoid trauma, improves the bond between animal and caretaker and leads to happy, confident and obedient working elephants .
The cruel training must end! We urge the government and industry to implement humane training methods, starting from the next training session!
Sign our petition demanding humane training for elephant twins Ram and Laxman here: