Stop Abuse and Exploitation of Elephants

The Indonesian Animal Welfare Society team have recently visited and witnessed animal cruelty acts in tourism places in Indonesia. The tourist destination was located near habitats of Sumatran Elephant. However what our team witnessed is something far from worthy of a tourist destination.

Elephants were exploited from morning to afternoon, forced to carry visitors and perform acts. Elephants are forced to work accompanied by their handlers that carry sharp metal bullhooks. The bullhooks were being held by the handlers during elephant rides, and during the performance of elephant acts. Our team witnessed stabs and swings of the hook towards the elephant’s head, causing bleeding wounds.

image above: Bullhooks used for elephant rides


The use of bullhooks to control elephants has been banned in countries. It is nothing but tools and acts of cruelty to control these gentle animals for the purpose of entertainment. Once the elephants are done entertaining visitors, they are chained up until the next ride, the next show, or even the next day.

Our team saw that this treatment happened to all elephants, regardless of age. We saw young elephants that are ridden by adult humans, ready with bullhooks in their hands, forcing the young elephant to perform.

Image: Baby elephant forced to perform with bullhook (red circle) swinging towards neck


We believe that these acts need to stop!! There is no place for this type of cruelty.

Help us deliver a message to the Indonesian President Joko Widodo, and also the Ministry of Environment and Forestry Indonesia, to STOP ALL FORMS OF ABUSE TOWARDS ELEPHANTS! Stop elephant rides, and stop ALL elephant shows. Indonesian elephants are protected under Indonesian law, and it should be illegal for these acts to continue.

Help us send a message and make a change by signing our petition here:

and make sure we can help make the voices of Indonesian elephants.


More images below:

Selfie with elephants

Various age and sizes of elephants ready to perform. The handlers carrying bullhooks (circled in red).

Entertained visitors

Standing on elephant faces

Touching the elephants after a show

more bullhooks used for handling