Three More Countries Ban Wild Animals In Circuses

On a global scale, this has been an extraordinary six weeks for anyone involved with or interested in releasing wild animals from their bonds as circus performers.  Through many years of work by animal rights activists on a global scale, three additional countries, Ireland, India and Italy, have all recently banned circuses from exploiting wild animals for human amusement.   And there’s a way that you can convince the U.S. get on board!

Ireland: Michael Creed, Ireland‘s Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine signed regulations that will be effective January, 2018.  He stated,

“The use of wild animals for entertainment purposes in circuses can no longer be permitted.”

The public at large in Ireland demanded this change in policy, and their government responded!  Organizations who worked to make this happen include the Irish SPCA, Animal Rights Action Network (ARAN) and Animal Defenders International (ADI).

India: After many investigations that revealed unlivable conditions, animals who were highly stressed and ill and lacked any medical care, the Central Zoo Authority of India made the decision to cancel the registration of seven circus operators.

According to India Today, “All circuses evaluated were found violating the norms.”  The circuses claimed they kept the elephants for “educational” purposes, but inspectors found that elephants could hardly move because of injuries and pain.  They were chained constantly and prodded by metal bullhooks.

In 1998, the government there had barred bears, monkeys, tigers, panthers and lions ‘from being exhibited or trained as performing animals.’  Elephants were omitted from the ban, and now they are included.

Italy:  The country has committed to breaking the chains of cruelty as well!  And their new rules apply to ALL animals, not just wild animals.  According to Express, 2000 animals are forced to perform in approximately 100 circuses throughout that country.  The rules on how the ban will be implemented are being codified and will take effect over the next year.

Italy’s Minister of Culture Dario Franceschini promoted the legislation to phase out animals in circuses.

Pressure is growing on other countries to follow the trend, including Scotland, Wales and England.  Almost 95% of Britons are in favor of the ban, which has been on the table for discussion for the last seven years.

As of now, 29 states in the U.S. have also banned wild animals in circuses, but the country as a whole is still not on the bandwagon.  Did you know that studies show:

  • 71% of circus animals have medical problems
  • Elephants are shackled in chains for an average of 17 hours each day
  • Tigers are terrified of fire but are still forced to jump through fire rings

Courtesy, Animal Defenders International

This is the perfect time for you to get involved, by urging Congress to support the Traveling Exotic Animal and Public Safety Protection Act (TEAPSPA), which would end the use of wild and exotic animals in traveling circuses in the U.S. once and for all.  Click here to learn  more about how to help stop the suffering!

And don’t think for a moment that the amazing developments this week regarding Nosey the Elephant have gone unnoticed by   Once the decision is finalized, we’ll bring you all the good news about her status!  So keep checking back here for updates.

ISPCA CEO Dr. Andrew Kelly said it best,

“Travelling circuses cannot and will never be able to provide a suitable environment for wild animals.  Coercing wild animals into doing tricks for human entertainment is outdated”.


Lisa Blanck

Writing articles about animals for more than 22 years, she dove into the rescue world with the onset of Hurricane Katrina. As an outspoken advocate for animals, she's covered everything from paws to hooves, fins to feathers. She was the Orlando Animal Rescue and Worldwide Animal Issues Examiner for seven years. She's always thinking pawsitive, looking for ways to improve the lives of animals. She lives with one dog, one cat and one patient human. She welcomes your suggestions and is thrilled to be part of the family!


  1. Audrey Manasterski says:

    I have hated circuses for that reason, the animals are confined to small quarters/cages, chained for hours. Elephants are tortured with bull-hooks if they don’t do a trick properly. They all live in terror of being abused, that’s why they do what they’re forced to do.

  2. Carol Hoadley says:

    I am against animal abuse.

  3. Eleanor Bravo says:

    Thank you for elevating this terribly important issue. We will continue to get the US on the right track. We must remain vigilant!

  4. Diana Taylor says:

    to exploit for their amusement & to make $$$!
    They need to stay in the wild & not be bothered!

  5. Diana Taylor says:

    to exploit for their amusement & to make $$$!
    They need to stay in the wild & not be bothered!

  6. Sam Meyers says:

    Scotland passed the first round of legislation banning circuses last month so they are well on the way to achieving this also.

    1. Lisa Blanck says:

      Fantastic to hear! Thanks for the update 🙂

  7. Donna says:

    Wonderful 💗💗💗💗💗

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