Written by Jennifer OConnor
Update: After a
PETA staffer swore out a complaint against Henry Hampton, Lazy 5's owner, Hampton
finally made arrangements to trim two giraffes' painfully overgrown hooves.
Because he delayed the critical procedure and caused one giraffe to suffer for more than a year,
PETA is calling for prosecutors to pursue cruelty-to-animals charges against
him. However, PETA is open to dropping the charges if Hampton promises the
court that he'll adhere to a continual regimen of appropriate hoof care.
The following was originally posted December, 14, 2011.
North Carolina's Lazy 5 Ranch
should be the last place that schools take children on field
trips, unless the trip is meant to teach children about how cruelly animals are
treated in roadside zoos. But visiting Lazy 5 is exactly what some local
schools are doing.
In the last year and a half, federal authorities have cited Lazy
5 for 21 violations of animal welfare laws, and the
feds have also opened a formal investigation into the roadside zoo. One giraffe's hooves are so overgrown that she
has to walk on her heels. She has suffered this painful,
debilitating condition for more than a
The zoo has also been
cited for leaving a deer to languish with a hernia for more than a month after euthanasia
was recommended, failing to properly care for a deer with a large wound that
was infested with flies, failing to shear sheep who were left panting in heavy
fleece in 86-degree weather, and allowing dangerous, unsupervised public
contact with animals. The list goes on and on, and PETA
is appealing to all local schools to stay away.
local school takes children on field trips to the zoo or circus, click here for tips on reaching
out to your principal to get these cruel field trips off the list.
Written by PETA
PETA is calling upon the U.S. Department of
Agriculture (USDA) to investigate whether the owner of a New Jersey roadside zoo and pet store did enough to prevent a fire
in which two giraffes, up to 15 parrots, and several dogs and cats died. The letter
also asks the USDA, "[I]f this loss of life is found to have
been preventable, … hold Sipp and Animal Kingdom Zoo responsible."
Every day has its
share of tragedy for captive wild animals forced to languish in cramped
enclosures at roadside
and pet stores.
The fire at Animal Kingdom Zoo is the second since April, when a fire killed
Burton Sipp's wife, Bridget. In the latest fire, a mother giraffe and her calf
were locked inside a building, and the mother was crushed to death by a falling
wall, raising questions about the facility's structural integrity. Her calf also
did not live through the night. Indeed, just over two weeks before this lethal
fire, the USDA cited the facility for 19 violations
of the Animal Welfare Act, including
failure to maintain the structural strength of the giraffe enclosure and
numerous other animal enclosures.
Please never visit
roadside zoos or facilities that sell animals. You can also help animals at three roadside zoos—Cherokee Bear Zoo, Chief Saunooke Bear Park, and Santa's Land—by
clicking here to urge officials to close these dilapidated facilities.
by Heather Faraid Drennan
Whether you believe in karma or payback, in 2010 we saw that for every action there is a reaction. We've rounded up the top six "Payback Is Hell" stories of 2010. It's safe to say that animals are just as tired of cruelty to animals as we are.
Written by Mirisa Roy
Two separate attacks on people by angry, frustrated, imprisoned animals over the weekend has this gal wondering: Are zoo prisoners launching a sort of global Attica-style revolt? Let's consider the evidence.
Exhibit A: At Roger Williams Park Zoo in Rhode Island, 20-year-old Griffy, a so-called "towering beast" of a giraffe, head-butted a zookeeper, who luckily managed to stagger out of the enclosure to safety. Zoo officials downplayed the attack, calling it a "playful" accident. Really?
And exhibit B: At the Byculla Zoo in Mumbai, a 55-year-old elephant named Laxmi attacked a man who entered the pen that she shares with another elephant, Anarkali, who is 46. Laxmi is old and ailing, and a month ago she was the subject of an urgent appeal by PETA India, which urged that she be removed from the zoo, where she has been chained and beaten. Anarkali, too, has been abused in this zoo, and PETA India wants the two of them moved to a sanctuary. The man was severely injured when he was removed from the enclosure and was declared dead shortly thereafter.
So tell us: Are animals like Griffy, Laxmi, and Tilly—who were meant to roam or swim for miles but are instead imprisoned in tiny pens or pools—simply being "playful" with zookeepers? Is this behavior uncharacteristic? Or are they revolting against their cruel confinement, their loss of freedom, and the fact that they are deprived of a real life?
Written by Karin Bennett
Last month, Amali, a 5-year-old giraffe, got an unnatural knot in her neck from an injury sustained in-transit to the Tulsa Zoo, where she was expected to breed with a male giraffe. After weeks of treatment with ineffective drugs, Amali's neck remained crooked. A few days ago, zoo veterinarians prepared her for an X-ray procedure, but soon after sedation, Amali died.
Amali's disability may have looked unusual, but her tragic passing is an all-too-ordinary occurrence for giraffes at zoos. Captive giraffes frequently die as a result of inadequate care and space. Veterinary neglect is often lethal—as it was in 2005 for a giraffe named Kenya at the Columbus Zoo after the zoo's chief veterinarian administered the wrong drug during surgery. In 2006, Makena, a 1-year-old giraffe, fatally broke her neck while she struggled to free herself after her head became wedged in a small space at the Lee Richardson Zoo in Kansas. Earlier last year, Dusti died from strangulation when he became entangled in a pulley system at Brookfield Zoo in Illinois. The year before, Makonnen, a 2-year-old giraffe, died in a barn fire at Six Flags in Vallejo, Cali.
Giraffes belong in the wild, not in enclosures that offer many opportunities for these curious animals to become injured. If you notice abuse or mistreatment of animals in your local zoo, file a report. Your observations and documentation can save lives that would otherwise be lost to neglect and carelessness.
Written by Logan Scherer
Just a month after PETA wrote to the cast and producers of The Zookeeper to warn them that the company supplying animals for the movie's production has a long list of USDA citations, we have heartbreaking news to report. Tweet, a giraffe on the set who had also been forced to perform in Ace Ventura and a slew of Toys "R" Us commercials, has died.
Tweet collapsed in his pen while being fed on Friday. While giraffes in the wild can live into their mid 20s, Tweet was only 18 years old.
The results of Tweet's necropsy haven't been released yet, but according to a whistleblower who contacted PETA, Tweet's premature death may have resulted from his eating pieces of the blue tarp that covered his enclosure. The whistleblower alleges that Tweet's owner and trainers were notified that the giraffe had been eating the tarp but that they did nothing about it.
The whistleblower also said that Tweet spent the last few months of his life confined to a 20-foot-by-20-foot stall, which was barely large enough for the 18-foot-tall giraffe to lie down in. In their natural habitat, giraffes live in vast home ranges of up to 400 square miles.
PETA is now calling on the USDA to investigate Tweet's death. We're also asking for other people associated with the production of the movie to come forward with additional information about the treatment of animals on the set.
Written by Shawna Flavell
you have a general question for PETA and would like a response, please e-mail Info@peta.org. If you need to report cruelty to
an animal, please click
here. If you are reporting an animal in imminent danger and know where to find the
animal and if the abuse is taking place right now, please call your local
police department. If the police are unresponsive, please call PETA
immediately at 757-622-7382 and press 2.
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Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights? Read more.