Thank you for covering the issue regarding elephant rides at the upcoming Nevada County Fair.
Have Trunk Will Travel, the company contracted with to provide the elephants for the fairgrounds, has been cited in the past by the USDA for safety violations. In addition, there is compelling videographic evidence depicting Have Trunk Will Travel using cruel training methods on the elephants at their facility.
We feel parents should strongly consider the dangers of placing their child upon a captive animal that has been treated inhumanely. We also feel it is imperative to teach children about the beauty and majesty of these endangered animals. Riding an elephant is the wrong way for them to learn an appreciation for these magnificent beings.
Many other fairs and exhibits have discontinued their relationship with Have Trunk Will Travel based on security and safety concerns: the Orange County Fair (after 25 years), the Los Angeles County Fair (after 23 years), the Upland Lemon Festival, the Fountain Valley Recreation and Community Service Department, the Santa Ana Zoo, the City of Pacific Palisades, the City of Sierra Madre and the Santa Ana Science Center.
With safety and compassion in mind, we hope that the Nevada County Fair board of directors will take action and cancel its contract with Have Trunk Will Travel.
JP Novic, executive director
Center for Animal Protection and Education