Animal Defenders International


Animal Defenders International


4904 people have signed this petition so far

Animal Defenders International and the undersigned Angelenos urge Los Angeles City Council Members to restrict the use of wild animals (exotics and non-domestics) in traveling circuses for the following reasons:

Animal Welfare

  • Traveling circuses cannot meet the physical, psychological or behavioral needs of wild animals, which suffer severe confinement, social deprivation, long periods of time in transporters, brutal control methods and physical violence.
  • Fear, intimidation, violence, emotional deprivation and withholding food, forces animals to perform.

Public Health and Safety

  • Keeping large, dangerous, stressed wild animals in close proximity to the public in lightweight, temporary enclosures have proven disastrous. Workers and public have been killed and maimed; lions, tigers and elephants have all escaped.
  • Around 12% of Asian and 2% of African elephants in North America have tuberculosis, which is transmissible to humans.


  • Enforcement of animal welfare regulations is difficult as circuses are constantly moving; this justifies a restriction.


  • Circuses must change with the times. Human only circuses are thriving. Cirque du Soleil generates an estimated $810 million a year, whereas the Piccadilly Circus wild animal show canceled performances due to poor ticket sales.
  • Circus workers perform multiple roles; staff can be retrained, so jobs are not lost. In fact, some surveys show that a decline in animal circuses can be matched by a rise in circuses with human performers, creating jobs.

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