Stop Forcing Elephants to Live in Cramped Conditions at Zoo

Target: Kevin Tanner, Director, Melbourne Zoo

Goal: End the captivity of elephants at the Melbourne Zoo.

An elephant that was held captive for 40 years at the Melbourne Zoo has died due to a degenerative foot and joint disease. Despite concerns that his living conditions were too cramped, the Asiatic bull elephant named Bong Su was forced to spend his days in a concrete exhibit for the purposes of allowing the public to gawk at him. The Melbourne Zoo has stated that Bong Su’s condition had deteriorated to the point that they had no other option but to euthanize him.

Elephant experts and zoo consultants say that Bong Su’s death was entirely preventable and that his arthritic condition was the result of his unnatural living circumstances. Bong Su first showed signs of arthritis in 2005, but concerned observers noted that the elephant had developed severe behavioral problems far earlier. It was known that Bong Su would turn in circles endlessly each night in his barn, walking through his own feces, as a result of his boredom and distress. This constant motion may have led to his debilitating condition.

Elephants are intelligent, social creatures that do not do well in captivity, and it is time that they are removed from all zoo exhibits. Sign this petition to demand that the Melbourne Zoo put an end to their elephant program and transfer all remaining elephants to a wildlife sanctuary so they can live out the rest of their lives with the dignity and space they need.


Dear Mr. Tanner,

The untimely death of an elephant kept at your zoo named Bong Su was a preventable tragedy. He had shown signs of distress for years as a result of his inadequate living conditions, as shown by his repetitive pacing that could have led to his crippling arthritis. This behavior shows that Bong Su was depressed, bored and stressed as a result of being forced into a cramped and unnatural living environment.

Elephants cannot be humanely kept in zoos, as they require far more space and opportunities for social interaction with their own kind than captive conditions can realistically provide. That is why I am calling on you to put an end to your zoo’s elephant program and ensure that all remaining elephants are transferred to a more humane wildlife sanctuary.


[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Andy Mitchell

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  1. Sonja Beyer says:

    Surely an intelligent and sensitive animal like an elephant should not be kept in such conditions be intelligent (?) people who care (?) for the animals in their charge!!!

  2. Let all the elephants go to a sanctuary immediately! Their lives depend on it! Their sanity depends on it! Hurry before it’s too late!

  3. Sugandha N. says:

    Thankfully more and more people are learning about the animal abuse that happens in circus behind the scenes and it needs to end. Just like factory farming, fur farming, animal experimentation and etc.

  4. Melbourne, I am saddened and disgusted that you supposedly forward looking and educated people are still in the middle ages as far as your knowledge and treatment of animals are concerned. Ignorance, greed, what is it about you that you you torment animals as though you have every right to do so? You haven’t. What goes round comes round. Don’t forget it.

  5. I JUST signed another petition to try to save this poor elephant. The zoo had been warned and notified by vets about his health and needs. I am so disappointed in the zoo and the Australian people to let this magnificent beast be treated so poorly until they had to KILL him! He didn’t die, the zoo caused his ill health and then Killed him! You could have saved him. All you had to do is listen to the vets! Torture and abuse!

  6. Lisa Zarafonetis says:

    Signed & shared❗️?

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