Just last month, Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus announced it will retire its circus elephants by 2018. This month, the state of California wants to follow in its footsteps.
A bill to ban the use of bullhooks, the sharp metal sticks that circus trainers and some zoo caretakers use, on all elephants in the state, was introduced Wednesday by state Sen. Ricardo Lara (D-Bell Gardens). The proposed law would prevent any circus that uses bullhooks from entering the state with its elephants. The measure would take effect in 2018.
"There is no place in California for mistreating elephants for any reason," Lara said in a release. "These gentle and intelligent creatures, whose species survival is being threatened by poaching from the pernicious ivory trade, deserve our care and respect."