Stop Circus Suffering

VICTORY! Italy has banned ALL animals in circuses!

The final vote on the bill to phase out ALL animals in circuses and travelling shows took place on November 8th 2017 in the Assembly of the Italian Parliament and is now law!

Rules for implementation of the new legislation to phase out all animals in circuses will be set out within one year by a Ministerial decree.

Italy has an estimated 100 circuses with some 2,000 animals making this one of the biggest victories in the campaign to stop circus suffering – regardless of how long is set for the phase out.

In March, ADI President Jan Creamer addressed a special workshop organised by our friends at LAV Italy at the Italian Senate, to launch the Bill. This was followed by a screening of the Italian version of our film Lion Ark. Jan and ADI Vice President Tim Phillips also spoke alongside LAV at a screening of Lion Ark at the Turin Environmental Film Festival and the film toured a number of Italian festivals. We scarcely dared believe the ban would be passed by Christmas, and it covers ALL animals, not just wild animals.

Italy becomes the 41st country to pass national measures prohibiting the use of animals in circuses.

If it can happen in a country with a massive circus industry like Italy – it can happen everywhere – help secure a victory where you live:

  • In the US, please urge your Representative to support the Traveling Exotic Animal and Public Safety Protection Act (TEAPSPA), the U.S. federal bill to ban the use of wild animals in traveling circuses.
  • In England, call on the government to introduce their bill to ban wild animal acts – it has been sitting on the shelf for FOUR years! Contact your MP and help make it happen.
  • In Scotland, urge your MSP to back the government bill to ban wild animals in circuses as it progresses through the Scottish Parliament.
  • In Ireland, ask your TD to support Paul Murphy’s private members bill to ban wild animals in Ireland’s circuses, to be debated on 21st November 2017.
  • Help ensure ADI can support campaigns to end circus suffering throughout the world – our investigations and research are vital to the progress we are seeing. Donate here.

YOU can take action today, right now and YOU can make a difference to animals.


  1. Yvonne Brown · 8 November 2017 at 4:37a

    Italy bans animal circusesGreat news ADICongratulations

  2. Gene Yakub · 8 November 2017 at 4:37a

    Over the moon with joy! While I lived in Italy I constantly wrote appeals to get involved in banning them there, and am so grateful for all the effort! May they be released much earlier than in one year!

  3. Alessandra · 8 November 2017 at 4:37a

    For once I am proud to be Italian.

  4. Pingback: Ireland, Italy, And India Join Growing Global Trend Of Banning Circus Animals –

  5. claudio di caterina · 8 November 2017 at 4:37a

    leggete l’articolo……io sono italiano e i circhi li vedo ancora in giro…. l’articolo dice ben altro..

  6. Tracey · 8 November 2017 at 4:37a

    Not happened on holiday in Sardinia in 2019 adult tiger being used. Have alerted people

  7. Michael Moellgaard · 8 November 2017 at 4:37a

    There is a very important aspect of banning animals from circuses: There MUST be a plan for the withdrawal of the animals. Without it they are left in no mans land and that is worse than performing in a circus.
    We have the case in Denmark (August 2019). Four circus elephants are suffering immense boredom and frustration since August last year. One has started showing mild aggression toward people, others have started slowly ripping the ceilings off their barns. Its heartbraking to see what happens to these proud and wonderful animals.
    So, please, all legislators! Before issuing a ban, be sure to have a plan for the animals’ future. Or you may be doing the exact opposite of what you had in mind: Ruining the lives of these animals. Don’t just expect something. Investigate, make the necessary research, and get the plan approved by the owners of the animals before you issue any ban. Or the animals will be the ones paying for the lack of preparation.

  8. Kacper · 8 November 2017 at 4:37a

    I’m in Italy right now (Sept. 29 2021) – in Gualdo Tadino. There’s a widely advertised circus show starting Oct. 1 and scheduled to run for 10 days. There’s an elephant on all of the posters and in fact I have just seen an elephant next to the circus tent – right in Gualdo Tadino. How is it legal, if that law is in action?!

    1. ADI Admin · 8 November 2017 at 4:37a

      Hi Kacper, thank you for your concern for the animals in Italy. The rules to implement the measure are still to be drawn up by the government and adopted. Follow us on social media to keep informed of developments as they happen and possible actions. Locally, you can also contact our friends at the Italian group LAV to see if there are specific actions you can take:

  9. Fran · 8 November 2017 at 4:37a

    Italy has not implemented the ban yet it is still going on and it’s 2022 I just went past one and stopped to say something

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