"The academic panel concluded that there appears to be little evidence,to demonstrate that the welfare of animals kept in travelling circuses is any better or worse than that of animals kept in other captive environments".

-Executive summary of DEFRA Circus Working Group 2007.

"It is irrational to take a stand against circuses on grounds that the animals in circuses necessarily suffer, unless they are to take the same stand against zoos, stables, race horses, kennels, pets and all other animal keeping systems".

-Dr Marthe Kiley-Worthington, world renowned animal behaviour expert.

Here at Eroni's Circus, we are very passionate about the welfare of our animals.

Our four legged team are very valued by us, and their wellbeing is always paramount.

We believe that all animals should enjoy a great quality of life and firmly believe this can be provided on a well run circus.

Our animals are trained by positive reinforcement, no different to how your average pet dog or riding horse is trained.

The short sticks and lunging whips used in the horse acts are extensions of the trainer's hand, much the same as those used with dressage horses.

Positive reinforcement is the technique of continually repeating the steps involved with a trick and offering a reward (food, praise, etc) for the animal showing even the tiniest improvement.

With enough patience and repetition over a period of time, animals can be taught a huge range of skills.

All of the manoeuvres trained, are extensions of natural behaviours and it's very important to note that we work with each animal's unique individual talents.

Travelling days are safe, comfortable and positive experiences. 

The animals display no signs of stress, to the contrary they act with enthusiasm and excitement.

The fact that circus animals are NOT stressed by regular transportation is strongly supported by scientific research.

German animal behaviourist Dr Immanuel Birmelin (Society of Animal Behaviour and Research) carried out salivary cortisol measurements on circus elephants and lions. A short excerpt is below.

"A non-invasive assessment of welfare in captive elephants can be realised by measuring the salivary Cortisol, which indicates stress.

There were no differences between the measured values before and after the transport, which leads us to the conclusion, that the tour did not cause stress for the elephants."

Our animals rarely experience boredom, as they are kept in large enclosures with companionship and ample freedom to play, graze and exercise.

Much mental stimulation is provided by their training sessions and human interaction.

Additionally one can never underestimate the regular change of scenery, smells and vegetation as exciting stimulation for the animals.

Wherever possible, bones for the dogs, toys, etc, are also provided.

As is the case with any responsible animal ownership, all of our animals are regularly de-wormed, hooves/claws trimmed and vaccinated.

Their diets are carefully monitored and tailored to the needs of each individual animal.

We always take great care to source premium quality feed, additional vitamins and minerals supplements are also added to provide optimal health.

We believe this attention to the inner wellbeing clearly shows in their shiny coats, bright eyes and healthy, strong hooves.

Lastly, one must not forget that the welfare of ALL circus animals in Australia is protected by government regulation.

      Our thoughts on "animal rights" activists and groups...

As you may already be aware, there is some opposition toward the use of animals in circuses, by vocal "animal rights groups".

Firstly, one must be aware that there are huge fundamental differences between the concepts of "animal welfare" and "animal rights".

We wholeheartedly support animal welfare but are opposed to animal rights, which is otherwise known as "animal liberation".

- Animal Welfare is a human responsibility that encompasses all aspects of animal well-being, including proper housing, management, disease prevention and treatment, responsible care, humane handling, and when necessary, humane euthanasia.

- Animal Rights is a philosophical view that animals have rights similar or the same as humans. True animal rights proponents believe that humans do not have the right to use animals at all. Animal rights proponents wish to ban all use of animals by humans including pets.

For a number of years, animal rights groups of varying degrees of extremism have harassed circuses with unfounded claims of animal exploitation, cruelty and abuse.

Using flawed information, dated/staged imagery, prejudice and often complete fabrications of the truth, these groups attempt to manipulate public opinion toward their suspect agendas.

Animal rights activists are firmly against ALL animals in ALL circuses, no matter how well they are treated.

As evident by the quote below, some of these groups have very radical views...


"Pet ownership is an absolutely abysmal situation brought about by human manipulation."

"Eventually companion animals would be phased out."

-Ingrid Newkirk, President of PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals).


We at Eroni's Circus feel that the campaigns pushing to ban circuses with performing animals are bigoted and lacking in commonsense.

To stereotype and tar all circuses with the same brush is unfair and irrational.

Most of the negative stories surrounding circus animals are either : dated, from overseas (often third world countries), or often simply untrue/exaggerated.

Many people would be amazed to the appalling extent the circus community and industry in general, are victimised by animal rights extremist groups.

You can help spread awareness to the reality of circus animals by liking our official facebook page "Eroni's Circus Animals".

For further reading on the topic here are some useful links.


These are the official codes and standards that circuses in Australia have to abide by.



Dr Marthe Kiley-Worthington, one of the world's foremost animal behaviour experts, was commissioned by the RSPCA and UFAW (Universities Federation for Animal Welfare) to carry out an independent, scientific study of circus animals, in comparison with zoos and in the wild. The results of her 18 month investigation are in this book.