This 70 Year Old Circus Elephant is Finally Living Her Best Life
Shirley, a resident at The Elephant Sanctuary in Tennessee, just turned 70 years old. Asian elephants normally only live into their 40s, so this milestone is extra special. Given Shirley’s tragic history, it’s a miracle she’s made it this far.
Snatched From The Wild
When Shirley was a five-year-old calf in Sumatra, she was kidnapped from her family and sold to a traveling circus. Since elephants live in families and have a special relationship with their mothers, this was especially heartbreaking. Shirley spent the next 20 years entertaining the masses. She spent her days in small, ill-kept enclosures, and her nights performing for a paying crowd.
It was a sad and lonely existence for Shirley, who just wanted to be with her family again in the wilds of Sumatra.
Tragedy Leads To Salvation
While traveling with the circus one day, tragedy struck. Bandits attempted to capture the traveling circus animals, stealing them for their own gain. The car carrying Shirley, and other performing animals, was overturned. Most of the animals died right there, but not Shirley! She survived. In another circus accident on a ship, Shirley was burned and permanently scarred.
Finally, a fight with another circus animal left her with a broken leg. Now maimed, the circus rejected her and sold her to a zoo. She was glad to be done with the circus life. Now she could live in peace, but she was lonely. Being the only elephant at the Louisiana Purchase Zoo and Gardens for 22 years was hard on Shirley.
A Happy Ending
When the zoo decided Shirley needed more space and companionship, they sent her to The Elephant Sanctuary in Tennessee. She arrived to find that she already knew one of the elephants who lived there. Her name was Jenny, and they worked together years before. As soon as Shirley saw Jenny, she was so excited to see her old friend. They became inseparable.
Although Shirley has been through great struggles in her life, she is a trusting soul. She’s kept her kindness over the years, despite her hardships, and loves her new home. The people at the sanctuary take great care of Shirley, from treating her tired feet to making her a surprise for her 70th birthday. She finally has a home and a new family, and that’s all she’s ever wanted.
Catch a glimpse of Shirley at the sanctuary on their Elecam!
More in OMG!
This Golden Retriever Gave Birth, And The Internet Can’t Get Over The Puppies
Katie and John Black love to foster dogs in need of a home. So, when Rosie came along, pregnant, they didn’t...August 13, 2018
Multitasking Dad Does The Incredible While Holding His Newborn At Baseball Game
It was a beautiful day at Philadelphia’s Citizens Bank Park. The Phillies were playing the Dodgers, having a great game. The...August 12, 2018
Five Skin Care Products For Women That Men Should Totally Use Too
Whoever said skincare is just for women had it all wrong. While many skin care products may be marketed as girly or...August 11, 2018
Message In A Bottle Washed Up On New Jersey Shore Remains A Mystery
One bright sunny day in New Jersey, the local beach patrol saw something shiny laying on the sand. One of the...August 11, 2018
Demi Lovato’s Amazing Fans Hold Their Own Concert In The Star’s Honor
Former Disney star Demi Lovato has lived a troubled past, battling drug addiction, mental illness, and self-harm for years. When the...August 11, 2018
The Reason This 24-Year-Old Adventures Across The Globe On Weekends Is Incredible
Have you ever longed to travel across the globe, but never had the time or budget to do it? As it...August 10, 2018
Swedish Bodybuilding Landscaper Earns Japanese Citizenship And Becomes A Superstar Overnight
Over time, a Swedish man fell absolutely in love with the country of Japan. So much so, he actually became a naturalized Japanese citizen....August 10, 2018
This Hamster Hadn’t Moved Or Eaten For Days, Then They Found Out Why
A popular animal to give to children when they’re learning to take responsibility for a pet is a hamster. Hamsters are...August 10, 2018
This Dentist’s Epic Dance Video To Drake’s Latest Hit Has Everyone Wanting Cavities
In case you have been living under a rock for the past few weeks, everyone has been participating in Drake’s “In...August 9, 2018