Retire the Oregon Zoo Elephants to a Sanctuary

  • by: Irene Mills
  • recipient: Randy Tucker, Legislative Affairs Manager, Portland Metro Council

Two of Oregon Zoo's elephants have tuberculosis. All the elephants suffer from chronic, painful foot ailments and display emotional misery by constant pacing, kicking walls and doors, swaying their heads repetitively and engaging in head-bobbing.

Oregon Zoo officials have failed to expand the elephants' living area with the money they received from a 2008 bond issue. What have they done with the bond money designated for this purpose? They have created elephant exhibits and breeding programs which are essentially profit-driven exploitation.

It is high time that the Oregon Zoo close its exhibit and retire the elephants to a sanctuary. There is strong evidence from scientists, animal behavior experts and responsible animal rights organizations about the detrimental effects of captivity on sensitive, intelligent animals like elephants.

It is no longer debatable whether captivity contributes to serious physical and emotional problems for elephants. IT DOES.

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