Viral skinny elephant in Sri Lanka festival had stomach problems, its owners clarified

  • A skinny elephant which was part of one of the festivals in Sri Lanka went viral after its photos were circulated online
  • Petitions to help save the elephant were created by several animal rescue groups and individuals
  • Owners clarified elephant Tikiiri had medical difficulties but is now eating well and putting on weight

Every year, “World Elephant Day” is celebrated during one of the days in the month of August.

Image from HelloThinkerbell Instagram account

According to Live Science website, elephants are the largest land animals, and also one of the most unique-looking animals.

But despite being large in size, many believe that these creatures are incredibly smart and are harmless. As one quote says… “Nature’s great masterpiece, an elephant; the only harmless great thing.”

That is why it is undeniable that many people from around the world show their love to the elephant kingdom, and there are many animal foundations and groups that support their welfare.

But recently, news reports and social media posts about a 70-year-old female elephant showing photos of its difficulties during the Perahera Festival in Sri Lanka circulated online, and created high buzz across digital platforms.

Image from Save Elephant Foundation Facebook Page

Several photos of the elephant — reportedly named “Tikiiri” — was posted on the Facebook Page of Save Elephant Foundation.

In the description of the post, Tikiiri is one of the 60 elephants that must participate in the festival every night for ten nights. And since it was wearing costume and mask, its condition was covered and unseen by people.

One photo showed a skinny elephant, while one photo showed Tikiiri wearing its costume.

Image from Save Elephant Foundation Facebook Page

A photo update about Tikiiri’s condition was also posted on Save Elephant Foundation Facebook Page which showed this tired elephant lying down.

Following this news, several petitions were made by animal welfare and rescue groups, and individuals who highly support the well-being of elephants and other animals.

Some of the petitions which aim to help save Tikiiri were created by Citizens for Elephant Welfare published in The Petition Site website, and Change.Org website created by Joanna Davidson.

However, the owners of the emaciated-looking elephant said Tikiiri has had a stomach problem for five months already and has difficulty chewing owing to her age, but apparently, they have made sure she has received Sri Lankan medicine and English medicine and that she’s getting better.

They clarified that they would not have let her parade if their vet had not said she was getting better. They got upset over the criticisms made online, but assures the public that Tikiri is their only elephant and is very loved by their family; even adding that they would never mistreat or harm the elephant which had been with them for 8 years.

The family went on to disclose that Tikiiri collapsed because she is old and tired. But now she is standing up, eating well, is putting on weight and is happily back at home.

Image from The Petition Site

Sources: Facebook YouTube The Petition Site Change.Org Facebook Live Science

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