I love the animals. Somehow when I was being formed in the womb the synapsis that needs to occur for a fetus to form maternal instincts just didn’t happen. However there was a lightening bolt when the animal appreciation part of my brain was formed. I can look at a cute baby and know that it is sweet and all but show me a kitten or a puppy and my heart literally scrunches. Tears spring to my eyes and I can hardly breathe. I just love them so. If I lived in a big house I would have so many pets it would ensure my single status forever as a crazy pet lady. If I weren’t so squeamish I would have been a vet.
I totally know better than to watch an animal type film in the theatre as I will weep copiously though it. I saw an advertisement for that penguin movie on DVD the other day and I know I will have to watch this thing at home because I will cry like a beauty pageant winner. I have such empathy for animals. I feel what they feel. Their triumphs are my triumphs. Their hairballs are my hairballs.
While I love all animals, even the ugly ones, I have a particular affinity for elephants. I don’t know why for sure but I suspect there was some sort of past life experience involved. It literally breaks my heart to see elephants performing in circuses. I hate that they use any animal in circuses but when they use that hook thingy to make elephants to do unnatural behaviours it is all I can do not to take that hook thingy an employ it on that trainer’s ass in a vigorous and imaginative way.
A few years ago I saw a documentary called “The Urban Elephant” which was not only moving but also very educational. On this show they featured an elephant sanctuary in Tennessee that offers a home to sick, needy and abused elephants. They actively rescue elephants as well as accept the requests of circuses and zoos that can no longer care for their elephants. They do very good work and have created miraculous recoveries with elephants who are both physically and emotionally unwell.
It is called aptly The Elephant Sanctuary and Carol Buckley and Scott Blais who have literally dedicated their lives to saving elephants run it. I have a link on my blog to their site and maybe some of you have gone there for a visit. Their elephants roam free on thousands of acres of land and no longer have to perform. They don’t even allow people to come and view the elephants. However, you can do this via the ELEcam, which they have set up so that you can see what the elephants are doing all over the property. They have a nice warm barn that the elephants have free access to if they want the shelter. Most prefer to stay out all night on the property. The staff uses ATVs to bring out food to the beasties so they don’t have to leave their resting places to eat. They call these forays Grocery Runs. They even go to the elephants to give them their naturopathic foot soaks as most of their residents have horrible foot problems due to standing on cement for most of their lives. Teva even made shoes for the elephants who needed them for comfort. How freaking cool is that?
These elephants have created strong family bonds with each other. They are all female and no breeding is done there. And you can read all about then on the ELEdiary complete with written entries and photos of The Girls. I LOVE this site!
Recently the USDA faulted a guy who rents elephants to circuses for profit who abused his animals and exposed his whole herd to TB. This a very dangerous disease for elephants and by this guy’s negligence loads of circus going people have been exposed to it as via these poor elephants when they watch them perform. Not cool. Finally after months of negotiating The Elephant Sanctuary has been awarded custody of nine of these sick elephants and they will be transferred to the brand new barn where they will have to be isolated for a year while they undergo treatment for their TB.
I highly recommend you guys check out this site. View the ELEcam and see The Girls having fun in the pond or the dust bowl. I am pretty smug over the fact that I can almost identify each of The Girls by their body shape. Hey! I have had a lot of spare time lately.
I don’t like to ask for your guys’ help but these cool people need some funds to move the new elephants to their new home (and let me tell you watching them arrive and discover their new homes via the ELEcam is seriously moving) and could use a hand. Check out their store and see if any of their products would make good Christmas gifts. I sent out their Christmas cards last year and they were a hit. Or if you have a spare couple of bucks after all your shopping (I know I am asking a lot) and are looking for a place that needs it please consider them.
Or just check out the ELEdiary and read about these very amazing animals. Their names are Tarra, Sissy, Winkie, Delhi, Bunny (AKA: The Elusive Bunny), Jenny, Shirley, Misty, Tange, Zula and Flora. The new additions are Lottie, Minnie, Sue, Liz, Ronnie, Frieda, Billie, Debbie and Queenie.