Good (—) to one and all. Some of you might have gone for elephant rides when you visited forests or when you went on vacation trips. It must feel good to ride on such a huge animal and get a view of the whole place. But I am here to tell you some things that you may want to consider next time you plan an elephant ride.
It may seem fascinating to see an elephant allow you to get on its top and take you for rides, but do you know the abuse and torture that these elephants go through to be trained to do that? World Animal Protection initiative in 2014, brought awareness about the harmful treatments of these elephants and the cruel conditions they are put in, and they said that the welfare standard in some places was very poor. They have tried to remove such practices from various places and tried to bring awareness to many people so that they don’t encourage such activities of leisure by sacrificing the welfare of the elephants.
You will stop engaging in such activities if you witness the cruelties that these creatures go through. Young elephants are taken away from their mother and put in confined spaces. If the mother resists, she may even get killed. They are trained there very harshly using instruments to hurt them. They are also tortured by not letting them sleep or leaving them hungry, to make them submissive to humans.
You may think that since the elephant is a large animal, it can easily bear the weight of many people sitting on it. But it isn’t so. Their spines cannot support the weight of people and as a result, they may get permanent spine injuries and even have skin diseases due to constant friction. Due to constant walking and no rest, some elephants also get arthritis and back injuries.
Most elephants that are subjected to this have a short life-span compared to others. They are also living beings. They can feel pain and emotions. Due to continuous torture from their childhood, they also become mentally weak and develop serious psychological issues like post-traumatic stress disorder. They are not allowed to socialize with their lot and are always held in captivity. When you question the owners before you take a ride, they will always assure you they use only humane methods, but it is not so. If you see that there is animal trekking somewhere, be assured that they have undergone serious torture.
Some organizations are now aware of the harm that these animals face and have removed it from the vacation plan lists. You have many other alternatives like watching them do their natural activities in their habitat. If you love animals, please avoid such activities as elephant riding. Make sure that you won’t be a cause of distress for these animals. Educate others about the horrors that these creatures face. Let’s make a better place for them to live in.
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