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Help save Nosey the elephant from a life of misery

January 12, 2013


Since 2009, IDA has worked tirelessly on behalf of an elephant named Nosey, who suffers in a variety of traveling circuses at the hands of her exhibitor Hugo Liebel. With your help, we have documented Nosey’s condition and numerous violations of the Animal Welfare Act (AWA) as she was dragged around the country to give rides and perform tricks. IDA members sent more than 18,000 letters and e-mails to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) urging the agency to help Nosey.

We reported a year ago that the USDA had finally filed charges against Liebel concerning numerous AWA violations for which Liebel had repeatedly been cited between 2007 and 2011. These included safe-handling violations that put Nosey and the public at risk, failure to provide adequate veterinary care, violations of food storage requirements, and unsafe and inadequate conditions in Nosey’s barn, enclosure, and trailer.

elephant Nosey chained in circusLiebel answered these serious charges with a rambling response blaming everyone but himself, without acknowledging any responsibility for the egregious violations. Given Liebel’s history, there is no indication he has any intention of improving his treatment of Nosey. Liebel continues to haul Nosey around the country, jamming her into a tiny, foul trailer with other animals. Nosey also suffers from a persistent terrible skin condition and is constantly chained, except when giving rides or performing unnatural tricks.

A hearing is scheduled January 15 in Tampa, Florida on the USDA charges. Please help us ensure a positive outcome for Nosey.


Send a message to Colleen Carroll, who is prosecuting on behalf of the USDA. Thank Carroll for her work on this case and encourage her to press for the maximum available penalties. Please ask Carroll, in the event that Liebel is found to be in violation, to push for the maximum allowable amount of fines and termination of Liebel’s license to exhibit animals.

We don’t want to disrupt Attorney Carroll’s office with emails and faxes, so we’re asking you to please take an extra few minutes to mail her a hard-copy letter instead. Below is a sample letter. Please personalize that model letter or compose your own similar letter and mail to:

Colleen Carroll, Esq.
Office of General Council
US Department of Agriculture
1400 Independence Ave., SW
Washington, DC 20250-1400

For those who do not have the option of postal mail:


Dear Attorney Carroll:

As a supporter of In Defense of Animals (IDA), I am very concerned about the plight of Nosey the elephant, who has been exhibited around the country by Hugo Liebel. Liebel is charged with numerous substantial, willful violations of the Animal Welfare Act, including repeated noncompliance with veterinary care, handling, housing, and husbandry requirements from 2007 to 2011. If Liebel is found to be in violation on these charges, I urge you to press for the maximum allowable sanctions

I would also like to express my gratitude for your work on this case to date, particularly your decision to pursue serious charges against Liebel.

The violations charged in the complaint are, as you point out, substantial, and many of them are repeated violations for which Liebel has previously been cited. Many of the violations are allegedly willful. His documented lengthy record compels the conclusion that Liebel is either unable or unwilling to comply with the laws and regulations put into place to protect exhibited animals and the public.

Therefore, I urge you, in the event that Liebel is found to be in violation on these charges, to press for the maximum allowable sanctions, including the highest possible amount in fines and termination of Liebel’s license to exhibit animals. I see no other way of ensuring the safety of Nosey, the surviving elephant, and any other animals who Liebel could acquire for exhibition.

Again, thank you for your efforts and attention to this serious matter.


my name is nosey,
a sad life i have had,
taken from place to place
by a human, so bad.
please help me find freedom,
and a sanctuary.
traveling circuses are not
for any animals,
including elephants
like me!

Karen Lyons Kalmenson

13 Comments leave one →
  1. karenlyonskalmenson permalink
    January 12, 2013 1:29 pm

    my name is nosey,
    a sad life i have had,
    taken from place to place
    by a human, so bad.
    please help me find freedom,
    and a sanctuary.
    traveling circuses are not
    for any animals,
    including elephants
    like me!


  2. January 12, 2013 2:04 pm

    Lovely poem Karen! I will mail my letter first thing Monday Morning Its too lae today the post office is already closed thanks Stacey i will share in several places


  3. lindabadham permalink
    January 12, 2013 3:33 pm



    • January 12, 2013 5:06 pm

      WHY is it so difficult for people to do the right thing? Thanks as always for your comments, Linda.


  4. Jane Lewis permalink
    January 14, 2013 1:56 pm

    I would prefer to email Colleen Carroll

    could you please send me the email ..I really think more people will do this if it is simple like sending an email


    Jane Lewis


  5. Glenda Edwards permalink
    March 16, 2013 2:53 pm

    This beautiful animal has spent her life entertaining others and performing for their profit. She deserves to have a better quality of life before its too late. Why is money more important than doing the right thing?



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