|Sent on:||Saturday, June 28, 2008 9:58 AM|
Only One Working Day Left to Reach City Council for Jenny!
1. CONTACT THE DALLAS MAYOR AND THE DALLAS CITY COUNCIL BEFORE THEY RECESS ON JULY 1 (see new talking points below). The offices of the mayor and city council may tell you to call the Zoo, but the Mayor and the City Council are the people who will make the final decision on Jenny. Please talk to them! And, keep calling until they do the right thing by Jenny.
Mayor Tom Leppert
2. WRITE A LETTER TO THE EDITOR TODAY!
We must bring Jenny's plight to the attention of the public by gaining access to the media. Letters to the editor is our best option, as we do not have a PR firm like the Zoo does. Please write a LTE to the
Letters should be between 50 and 200 words. Letters are selected for publication based on their clarity and brevity. They require the writer's name, city and telephone number.
Send your letter objecting to Jenny's transfer to Mexico to:
Letters From Readers
Or submit your letter online at http://www.dallasnews.com/cgi-bin/lettertoed.cgi
1. There will be NO U.S. Animal Welfare or Anti-Cruelty Laws covering Jenny in Mexico.
2. The sanctuaries who will accept Jenny have thousands of acres versus 4.9 acres at the Safari Amusement Park. The 4.9 acres is likely subdivided so Jenny may actually have far less space than that. However, the Elephant Sanctuary in TN (http://www.elephants.com/) is a state of the art, 2,700 acre elephant refuge. It is the largest natural habitat refuge in the world and has a four star charity rating from Charity Navigator. The PAWS Sanctuary (http://www.pawsweb.org/) in California has hundreds of
acres and is also a state
of the art, internationally recognized facility. Both U.S. sanctuaries are excellent and Jenny should be able to retire to one of these.
3. After you express your opinion, ask for a copy of the performance and quality of care standards the Dallas Zoo put in place for Jenny at the Safari Amusement Park. Note: We bet there probably are no such standards. The Zoo is claiming the Safari Park is AZA accredited, which means very little. AZA is just a trade group and is not a guarantee of quality. AZA facilities have been cited for breeches of USDA standards. The Zoo hired a PR firm to spin this story to the media, but the truth is still the truth.
HERE IS JENNY'S STORY:
On Tuesday, the Dallas Morning News ran a story entitled "Dallas Zoo's lone elephant to be moved to wildlife refuge in Mexico" about the zoo's controversial decision to dump Jenny, a 31-year-old African elephant, at a safari amusement park in Mexico . Since the death of Jenny's elephant companion, Keke (39), in May, Concerned Citizens for Jenny has urged the zoo to send Jenny to The Elephant Sanctuary in Tennessee.
The Mexican park offers an unnatural, confining exhibit of only 4.9 acres -- a small fraction of the 2,700-acre Elephant Sanctuary, where Jenny would share a spacious, 300-acre natural habitat with three other African elephants.
It is shocking that the Dallas Zoo is moving Jenny to a distant facility in a foreign country where she will not be protected by U.S. animal welfare and anti-cruelty laws, especially when there is a nearby U.S. facility with hundreds of acres that is prepared to take her.
After being torn from her mother's side in Africa at the age of two, she was forced into seven years of brutal training. Jenny has been at the Dallas Zoo for 22 years, where she has had a traumatic and troubled stay. Between 1996 and 2001, the In human health care, this is called "chemical restraint." medicated her with the tranquilizer Acepromazine because of aggression and self-mutilating behaviors. Federal regulators characterized Jenny's long-term treatment with this psychotropic drug as "highly unconventional."
Jenny is an abused, emotionally fragile
animal. She rocks back and forth, a sign of her extremely stressed mental
state or "zoochosis," caused by her living conditions in the Dallas Zoo, an AZA accredited facility. Jenny ekes out her existence in a small, barren prison at the Dallas Zoo, where she has nothing to occupy her time or her mind. The Zoo did not act in Jenny's best interests in the past and they are not acting in her best interests now.
She is beyond child bearing age and
emotionally unstable in a Zoo setting (including the one in Mexico). Jenny is not suitable to the Zoo's future expansion plans. They are sending her in another country where no one will be
able to track her and where she will be beyond our help.
Dallas Zoo is responding to our emails and calls by contending that the
Mexico facility is the best choice for Jenny because it is AZA
accredited. The AZA is just a trade association. Their standards are
very minimal and
voluntary. AZA standards allow zoos to lock a two ton elephant up for life in a very
small space and that meets AZA standards. AZA accreditation is no
guarantee of quality of care. We see behind this smoke-screen.
In Mexico, Jenny will have no US animal law protection and she will be constantly viewed by tourists in cars. She deserves to retire to a world-class sanctuary where she may roam in peace with other elephants.
While African elephants in the wild are known to reproduce into their 50s and live into their 60s, in zoos they commonly die decades short of their natural time. In short, the Dallas Zoo's decision is a matter of life and death for Jenny.
THE ZOO MAY SHIP JENNY TO MEXICO BEFORE THEY THINK WE ORGANIZE ACTION TO STOP THEM. PLEASE ACT FOR JENNY TODAY!
If you want to work with me to save Jenny, please contact me ASAP by telephone.
Chair, Concerned Citizens for Jenny