Elephant Appreciation Day is September 22nd


Celebrate by raising public awareness about the plight of elephants in zoos

Friday, September 22nd has been declared Elephant Appreciation Day, and as part of our campaign to get Earth's largest land mammals out of cramped zoos and into spacious sanctuaries, IDA encourages everyone to take some time to help elephants held captive in zoos.

Elephants in zoos commonly suffer a host of ailments directly attributed to severe lack of room and unnatural living conditions. Most zoos keep elephants in enclosures of less than one acre for their entire lives. This amount of space is not adequate, given that in the wild elephants typically travel tens of miles every day, and there are 640 acres in a single mile. Pachyderms were built for prolonged movement, but zoos keep them treading the same hard surfaces for decades, causing physical and psychological disorders and shortening their natural lifespan.

What You Can Do:

- Spend some time on September 22nd speaking out on behalf of elephants suffering in zoos. One way to do this is by educating the public through leafleting. Order a supply of leaflets to leave in heavily trafficked areas—on the subway, in the doctor's office, in your school cafeteria—anywhere someone will be likely to pick one up and learn more. You can also include them with your outgoing mail to educate recipients. You can order materials online.

- Write a letter to the editor of your local paper informing readers of the sensitive needs of elephants and the inability of zoos to provide for elephants physical and psychological needs. See a sample letter and get tips for writing an effective letter to the editor.

- Join IDA's Elephant Task Force! IDA is looking for activists living in cities with zoos to ensure the animals come first. There are opportunities to get involved at various levels, from simply visiting your local zoo and documenting conditions with your camera to making phone calls and organizing demonstrations. As a member of IDA's Elephant Task Force, you can help call attention to the need for serious zoo reform. We have already experienced success with the transfer of elephants from the San Francisco and Detroit zoos to the PAWS sanctuary. If you would like more information about the ways you can get involved, please send an email to zoos@idausa.org today.

- Create a display in your local public library. Most libraries will allow local citizens free space where you can display leaflets, posters, books about how elephants thrive in the wild and suffer in zoos.

Visit www.helpelephants.com to learn more about how elephants suffer in U.S. zoos.