Don’t Force Animals to Perform in Circuses


Target: Tom Vilsack, Secretary of Agriculture for the U.S. Department of Agriculture

Goal: Protect animals from being forced to perform in circuses across the United States.

All across the U.S. animals are forced to entertain the general public in circuses. These animals are taken from the wild and forced to perform and amuse with dangerous acts and stunts. The U.S. Department of Agriculture is not doing nearly enough to prevent the relentless abuse of circus animals. Circuses are continuously fined and cited under the Animal Welfare Act, but this does not seem to dissuade circuses from their horrific practices.

Equipment and tactics used to train and manipulate circus animals include whips, shock collars, electric prods,  hooks, and starvation. All of these techniques are used to coerce the animals into learning routines and tricks to their own detriment. Nine to eleven months out of the year these animals are transported all across the U.S. in tiny cages, forced to sleep, eat, and defecate in these small enclosures. These cages have no climate control and the animals often fall ill with heat stroke or heat exhaustion. During off-season, animals are often kept in travel crates, which can lead to the development of psychological disorders.

There is no reason to have these animals perform in circuses. It only provides benefits to the abusers. These conditions are disgusting and damaging. We can not allow the continuation of these abuses. Animals do not deserve this and they need to be saved.

Sign the petition below to prevent the relentless abuse of circus animals.


Dear Secretary Vilsack,

I am writing to urge you to help make forcing animals to participate in the circus illegal. The Animal Welfare Act is supposed to prevent these torturous practices, yet this is not the case. Circuses continue to practice these punishments and exhaustive transportation situations.

Animals need to live in their natural habitats to thrive. It is entirely unfair to take their freedom and life from them, and is unethical to allow this to happen under any circumstances. It is at no benefit to the animals to be kept under these conditions or to force them to perform for no purpose other than our entertainment. Animals are not alive for the sake of our amusement and to treat them as such is not only wrong, but harmful.


[Your Name Here]

Photo credit: Bain News Service via The Library of Congress

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  1. Jean-Louis Rubens says:


  2. it is you again have you no power at all to stop all this cruelty in circuses, how would you like to take part and be treated like them SORT IT ASAP if you know how.

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