Stop Circus Suffering

USDA inspection report reveals animal tragedy at Carson & Barnes circus

Compromised welfare revealed at Carson & Barnes Circus facility in Hugo, Oklahoma

A 2015 USDA inspection report for the Carson & Barnes Circus facility in Hugo, Oklahoma questions veterinary oversight and reveals compromised welfare of three elephants, a llama, and a pygmy hippo. One elephant and the hippo are now dead.

Nina was photographed during the inspection chained in the barn (above – photo obtained from January 5, 2015 USDA Inspection Report). The circus called Nina a “beloved family member,” but the troubling report reveals a different story. The USDA inspector described Nina as “thin” since 2013 and “emaciated” since losing 500 pounds in the past 7-8 months, 8.7% of her body weight. Nina died four months later in May.

A pygmy hippo named Katie also died while in Carson & Barnes care. The 2015 report questioning veterinary oversight and documentation at the facility noted Katie had also been “losing weight and not doing well while traveling for exhibition” in May 2014, but found no records to show treatment was given. Katie was “found dead” 6 months later.

The report also describes Bandit, a llama, having such “excessively overgrown hooves” that his toes curved to the side; a condition the inspector noted “can lead to chronic problems in the feet and legs.”

The report questions certain unprescribed, unapproved treatment given 2 elderly elephants – Opal and Rosie – by a person neither accredited nor trained by vets to perform it.

Prior ADI investigations include undercover video of Carson & Barnes elephants being hit with bullhooks and shocked with stun guns. It also reveals Isa the elephant giving children rides days after she aggressively attacked her trainer and another elephant. See ADI’s Out of Control video here.

Take action to stop circus suffering in the US!

Comments

  1. Elaine Grant · 27 May 2015 at 3:03a

    This is another really sad story, how much longer do we have to wait for there to be a ban on using and abusing animals this way, circus with animals is outdated, most people hate it, this should be relegated to the history books forever.

    1. Susan Hopper · 27 May 2015 at 3:03a

      I agree. Animals should not be used in shows to perform anymore. It is not necessary. There is so much in a circus to watch without forcing animals to do tricks on command. If you catch even one trainer or assistant mistreating an animal, that’s too many, and a good reason to remove them from the circus. Please, stop abusing our animals! They are so precious to us. One day, there won’t be anymore.

  2. maria kotsiopoulou · 27 May 2015 at 3:03a

    Animals don’t belong in your circuses!

  3. Michelle Grow · 27 May 2015 at 3:03a

    What will it take to make this STOP!!! How can anyone sit back and say this is okay??? If you have the power, then MAKE IT STOP or quit your job and let someone who has some gumption have the position.

  4. corinne mcmahon · 27 May 2015 at 3:03a

    I don’t understand this neglect and cruelty,these beautiful,helpless animals deserve SO MUCH better!! Why is this ALLOWED to happen???!!!!

  5. Vickie Mapp · 27 May 2015 at 3:03a

    Stop Circus Suffering! Live and Let Live. We are all in this together!

  6. Tammy Jackson · 27 May 2015 at 3:03a

    NEED TO LEAVE THOSE ANIMALS ALONE ,LET THEM GO, THEY SHOULD NOT B KEPT PRISONERS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  7. Melanie Barrett · 27 May 2015 at 3:03a

    Just release all these wild animals to sanctuaries. Stop starving and torturing them.

  8. Chris Middleton · 27 May 2015 at 3:03a

    I don’t understand what is wrong with these people??? And WHY after all of this was discovered, was there no immediate action to remove these poor animals????

  9. Professor Barry Spurr · 27 May 2015 at 3:03a

    Performing-animal circuses are a barbaric anachronism that no civilized, humane and progressive community should tolerate.

  10. Tommy Moran · 27 May 2015 at 3:03a

    These humans have no compassion. They sicken me. Greedy and tasteless!!!!! They should be fined & jailed……and more…..

  11. Suzanne Shaps · 27 May 2015 at 3:03a

    Unconscionable.

  12. kerrie Mathews · 27 May 2015 at 3:03a

    This is so cruel animals should not be in circuses they should be free this should have been stopped years ago

  13. Eva-Lotta Sanneh · 27 May 2015 at 3:03a

    Why?! please stop using animals in circus. Dont you see people doesnt like it anymore?!!!

  14. Bessy · 27 May 2015 at 3:03a

    This ridiculousness needs to end. And evidently, the USDA was useless. Our tax dollars not working on issues that matter, again. Very dissapointing.

  15. Natalie Adams · 27 May 2015 at 3:03a

    Please free these animals, they deserve better

  16. Jaci Elliot · 27 May 2015 at 3:03a

    The USDA is as guilty of abuse and neglect as these subhumans. Can’t we get these idiots(both) into court?

  17. Dot · 27 May 2015 at 3:03a

    Who gave us the right to use the animals for entertainment and profit? If these animals were ‘loved’ inspections would not have shown such neglect. Worse yet is that NOTHING was done to prevent their continued abuse. Do not allow these people more opportunity to do this!

  18. Lynne Henderson · 27 May 2015 at 3:03a

    Barbaric vile treatment that belongs in the dark ages. No animal should be treated in thus way.

  19. Linda hernandez · 27 May 2015 at 3:03a

    Please do the right thing and end the circus business !

  20. Lelja Hocevar · 27 May 2015 at 3:03a

    STOP THIS CRUELTY! Stop it NOW!

  21. rog borlase · 27 May 2015 at 3:03a

    BAN circuses from owning exotic animals. Elephants do not need to be abused! End the terror that elephants have endured.

  22. Lisa Hershner · 27 May 2015 at 3:03a

    Stop abusing your animals.

  23. marion atkins · 27 May 2015 at 3:03a

    Scandalousvfrom one of the richest nations in the world,step up america. With respect from spain

  24. Lynette Hattingh · 27 May 2015 at 3:03a

    This organisation NEEDS TO BE CLOSED DOWN!!!! They have absolutely no idea how to care for animals,elephants especially, and they have no compassion either.

  25. Lovie boston · 27 May 2015 at 3:03a

    This is disgusting. They need to be closed down and fined and imprisoned.

  26. Dorothy Maddam · 27 May 2015 at 3:03a

    Hmm, “The circus called Nina a “beloved family member,” Well, I guess we can take comfort in knowing that Nina wasn’t considered an enemy. I shudder to think how she would have been treated.

    Let’s face it. The circuses job is to make money regardless of the consequences to their victims.

    As for the United States Department of Assholes (USDA). I guess their job is to look busy and write reports and look the other way–at which they’re doing a fine job.

  27. Lisa Lammon · 27 May 2015 at 3:03a

    THESE PEOPLE GET CAUGHT USEING ELECTRIC PRODS>> UNDER COVER>> BLOW TORCHES that FIRE… TORCHES AND THE JUDGES LET THEM KEEP DOING CUS THEY COME OUT IN THE OPEN ALL NICE AND KIND AND TALK ALL SWEET> AND THEN THEY WALK AWAY AN LAUGH AT THE JUDGES THAT THEY BLUFF>> AN CONTUINE TO BEAT AN ABUSE THE ELEPHANT>> IN TENTS AT NIGHT… YOU NEED TO FIX THIS… we should take this matter in to our own hands no one is protecting these animals…. THIS IS A FELONY NOW.. YOUR NOT GOING BY THE FBI NOW… this is on you ,, HELP OUR AINIMAL FROM THESE MEN THAT DRAG THEM AND ABUSE THEM FOR MONEY… sick

  28. Lisa Lammon · 27 May 2015 at 3:03a

    TB TESTING ON ALL ELEPHANT GIVEING CHILDREN TB IS WRONG.. YOU NEED PROOF FROM A VET>> AND NOT YOUR OWN DAMN PERSONAL KISSS YOUR ASS VET….

  29. Patricia Vidal · 27 May 2015 at 3:03a

    This is unbelievable, a horrible tragedy that must be stopped immediately! We cannot tolerate abuse on these innocent elephants, we must help them get to sanctuaries where they can live in proper care and companionship with other elephants. We must outlaw animal slavery immediately and never allow animals to be exploited for profit and entertainment. It is up to us now to change things for good! We cannot stop until there is a change for all these elephants and other animals in captivity, abused and forced to perform.

  30. Evelyne DOMPMARTIN-DERI · 27 May 2015 at 3:03a

    Stop circus suffering. Elephants are intelligents animals and they will be free.

  31. joyce alexander · 27 May 2015 at 3:03a

    Disgraceful

  32. Dorothy Davis · 27 May 2015 at 3:03a

    Stop the abuse and torture of these beautiful animals!!!!

  33. GUIRAN · 27 May 2015 at 3:03a

    Bannir les animaux sauvages ou non dans tous les cirques

  34. Jeanine Wallace · 27 May 2015 at 3:03a

    NO WILD ANIMAL BELONGS TO A CIRCUS !

  35. rostoll · 27 May 2015 at 3:03a

    STOP BARBARIE

  36. marguerite piccolin · 27 May 2015 at 3:03a

    stop it

  37. Monica le marechal · 27 May 2015 at 3:03a

    Ca urge!!! Pas besoin de commentaires

  38. GALLOUX · 27 May 2015 at 3:03a

    boycott al circuses with animals !

  39. Kimberly Cleary · 27 May 2015 at 3:03a

    PLEASE RELEASE THESE POOR ANIMALS AN LET THEM LIVE FREE !!!!!

  40. Colleen Redfern · 27 May 2015 at 3:03a

    Animals should not be allowed to perform in a circus.
    It has to stop.

  41. Linda love · 27 May 2015 at 3:03a

    This has got to stop.it’s bee going on for to long.we must think of the well being of the animals

  42. shawn gibbons · 27 May 2015 at 3:03a

    Horrible circus they treat their animals very poorly malnourished treat there paying customers even worse

  43. Kelly · 27 May 2015 at 3:03a

    This is not hopeless. It is up to us to do more. Can you set up an information table to pass out fliers about this? Can you write letters and make copies for people to sign and pay for the postage and send them in yourself? We need to step it up and not waste our energy being angry but instead do more. Pleas do a little more on a regular basis and we WILL end these horrible animal acts.

  44. Graciealison · 27 May 2015 at 3:03a

    Free all our animals they don’t deserve abuse they deserve love peace and happiness close down all the circuses . Makes me cry inside to see them suffer like this . Take them to a sanctuary and let them be there for the rest of their lives and live in peace..

  45. Zellers · 27 May 2015 at 3:03a

    I was the teacher for this circus for a few months until I just couldn’t stay anymore. I had also been the teacher for the RIngling Bros Circus several years ago.
    I loved the elephants and all of the animals at the CB circus. I used to buy them veggies and feed them everyday. It was heartbreaking to see the trainers beat them with their sticks. They would mostly hit the animals when they thought no one was watching, but I saw them. The head trainer used the excuse that hitting an elephant with the stick equates to a human getting tapped with a ruler.
    IN ADDITION to animal abuse and neglect, this circus treats their employees horribly. Most of them are from Mexico and won’t say anything.

    This was one of the most depressing teaching jobs I’ve ever had. I am sorry that I never reported them.

  46. Lads · 27 May 2015 at 3:03a

    Wow. Maybe cities need to see this before bringing them in to make money. That’s the problem. Cities are uninformed and don’t bother educating themselves. Sad. And the owners make money and can’t bother treating the animals that got them rich.

  47. Nancy Lowe · 27 May 2015 at 3:03a

    I watched your elephant trainer’s video and I am disgusted. This little bastard trainer needs an electric prod up his anus and a bullhook to his feet and face. This video enrages me and this must stop and the perpetrators thrown in jail. These poor animals need to be taken from their life of hell and shown compassion for the wrongs done to them. Little jerks. I hope your business crumbles.

    Nancy J. Lowe

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