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Action against the Department of National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation for poorly treating a baby elephant

Action against the Department of National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation for poorly treating a baby elephant


Why this is important

A mahout from Surin, Thailand, claims the government has seized and mistreated his elephant, and is asking for help to file a lawsuit against state officials who have put the animal at death's door. The Department of National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation (DNP) unfairly confiscated his elephant, and put the elephant at risk of "imminent death" because of poor treatment.

The department filed a complaint with officers at Krapo police station accusing the mahout of possessing wildlife without permission. State officials then removed Phang Taengmo (the baby elephant) to the Thai Elephant Conservation Center (TECC) in Lampang province as state property. The Surin Public Prosecutor Office did not charge the mahout with illegal ownership, and then ordered the DNP to return Phang Taengmo to him.

He went to see the elephant at TECC on Sept 9. He couldn't take her because she was in a coma and had been in this condition for who knows how long. The officials say she was scared of some adult elephants when she was in the water and damaged her nerves causing the paralysis but there is no strong proof and 2 different stories on what really happened to her. He claims he found that she had injuries "all over her body" and could not stand. She appeared paralysed and in poor health. He was told by a veterinarian at the centre that Phang Taengmo could die within two months. The mahout said the illegal 15-month confiscation had adverse impacts on Phang Taengmo and resulted in her being weak and sick.

It would be more than kind to let her go and not suffer these long agonizing months until her last breath. It is tragic and indeed unacceptable. Vets at the gov. place claim they are vets to treat and not kill the elephants, no matter how much the elephants suffer. They aren't, however, treating her. It is complicated and unclear how she got in this condition in the first place.

Unfortunately, she is going to die. The vets are leaving her to die a slow, painful death instead of kindly ending her suffering through euthanasia. If they can no longer treat or cure an animal and the animal is in pain and suffering and inevitably going to die, they should end the suffering earlier or sign her over to an animal hospital who will humanely euthanize them instead.

Mr Surapong (mahout's lawyer) said the prosecutor’s decision not to indict the mahout meant he was innocent and authorities must return the elephant to him in the same condition. The department of national parks must compensate for loss and damage.

If the DNP had not removed an innocent man's elephant, then she would have not been moved to this centre and received deathly injuries from strange circumstances and would not be in the condition she is now.

We need to raise a strong enough demand from all around the world to change the laws on how a lot of Thailand citizens (mahouts and vets) treat their elephants and the consequences of bad treatment. Elephants must be treated with great care and looked after at all times. Their environment should be safe for them and prevent injuries. All should be done to cure them if they fall ill. If there is no hope and the animal is suffering, the humane thing to do is euthanize them.

This is just the beginning. It won't happen over night but with perseverance and involvement we will make a positive change.

Please sign and share this petition. We cannot let anybody abuse and cause suffering, especially innocent, beautiful animals.

UPDATE: On the 6th December baby Pang Teangmo passed away. After months of pain and suffering she is now at peace. The gov. place have refused to hand her back over to her owner even though he was found innocent so he cannot bury her near his home with family and friends at the ceremony as he would have liked too. This power the vets and DNP seem to have has gotten to their heads and isn't being used correctly. It is down to us to bring change. Please sign and share. Thank you.

Posted October 13, 2013
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