Breaking News!

Pictured: Asian bull elephant Prince, born at the Oregon Zoo and sent to the circus.
At PAWS he now lives free from the bullhook.
California Senate Passes SB 716,
Bill to Prohibit Use of Bullhook on Elephants!

Today, the California Senate passed SB 716 by a vote of 29 to 7! The bill would ban the use of bullhooks and similar devices on elephants. PAWS is one of the key sponsors of the bill, introduced by Senator Ricardo Lara. SB 716 now moves to the Assembly.


The bullhook is a weapon resembling a fireplace poker, with a sharpened steel tip and hook at the end. It is commonly used in circuses, rides and other "entertainment" to dominate and control elephants through pain and fear. Elephants are taught at a young age to associate the bullhook with pain by using it to forcefully prod, hook and strike the animals on sensitive parts of their bodies, sometimes causing wounds and lacerations. This inhumane training continues throughout their lives.


PAWS has been working hard to pass this measure which is critical to protecting captive elephants from harm. In addition to keeping our California members active with calling and emailing their state senators (they heard you loud and clear!), PAWS has been meeting with senators and their staff, urging a yes vote on SB 716.


Nearly a dozen cities and counties in the state have restricted the use of elephants and/or the use of bullhooks on elephants, including Los Angeles and Oakland. San Francisco has banned exotic animal performances. Only the Kern County Fair continues to offer elephant rides, but will end them in 2017. No AZA-accredited zoo in California uses a bullhook. Now is the time to end the use of this cruel weapon state-wide, but we need your help to do it!


Please support our efforts to pass the bullhook ban in the California Assembly by making a donation to PAWS today. Most of our budget is dedicated to caring for the elephants and other animals at our sanctuaries, leaving little for important advocacy efforts. Your generous gift will help free elephants in California from a life of pain and fear and set the stage for more legislation across the country on behalf of performing wild animals.




Performing Animal Welfare Society 
P. O. Box 849, Galt, CA 95632 | (209) 745-2606 |