Riding an elephant is an iconic goal for many tourists in Asia. Unfortunately, what goes on behind the scenes isn't nearly as appealing.
A tourist in Thailand recently recorded a young elephant going through the first stage of the "training crush" - the harsh training process that prepares elephants for work in the entertainment or labor industries, and is so named because it's literally designed to crush a young elephant's spirit.
In the video, a months-old elephant calf is seen tied to a tree by a short rope, circling the trunk and straining to get away. The calf had reportedly been heard crying earlier that week when she was taken away from her mother, according to Wildlife At Risk International (WAR).
"The baby will be tied like this for one week," WAR wrote, noting that the calf will have only bananas and water to eat, though Asian elephant calves should be drinking milk until they're 2 to 4 years old.