Victor Hugo Cardinali replies

Dear Editor, 

Thank you very much for contacting us about our animals. I am sure your readers, particularly those concerned with animal welfare, will be more than pleased to know that your story and pictures relating to one of our elephants was without foundation whatsoever. What your ill-informed snooper actually witnessed was one of our elephants (her name is Inga) coming out of a contented sleep and, with a rock and roll movement of her great size, getting to her feet in a perfectly natural way.

Had your informer taken the trouble to study elephant behaviour, they would know that even in a wild herd some stay awake while others rest.

In the circus business, our animals are our companions and also as performers help us make our perfectly legitimate living.

Why would we ill-treat them? We certainly would not benefit by not caring for them. I can assure you that Inga is a very happy animal.

Victor Hugo Cardinali, by email