PETA CALLS FOR USDA INVESTIGATION OF RINGLING AND LANCE RAMOS IN TIGER DEATHS

PETA CALLS FOR USDA INVESTIGATION OF DEATH OF TIGERS TRAINED FOR RINGLING ACT

 

Whistleblowers Report That Circus Is Leasing Big Cats From Hillsborough County Man With Abysmal Animal Care Record

 

Tampa, Fla. — PETA has sent an urgent letter to the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) requesting an investigation after learning from whistleblowers that two tigers—who were being trained by Lance Ramos, a.k.a. Lancelot Kollmann, for the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus—allegedly died this past summer after being unnecessarily anesthetized for microchipping, a simple procedure that does not require risky sedation. Sources tell PETA that Ringling is leasing a tiger act from Ramos, despite the Hillsborough County animal trainer’s abysmal animal care record, which dates as far back as 1989. Ringling’s newest show opens in Tampa tonight.

 

Ramos previously operated under his father’s USDA license, until it was permanently revoked in 2000 after an elephant killed a circus worker. The same elephant suddenly died several days later. Ramos was cited by the USDA when four big cats died after deworming medication was administered without veterinary supervision. Ramos has also been cited by the USDA for failure to provide veterinary care to injured animals; causing trauma, harm, and lesions to an improperly restrained jaguar; unsanitary conditions; and failure to provide adequate shelter and clean water. In July 2000, the USDA initially denied a permit to Ramos, stating, “You were responsible for or participated in violations that resulted in the revocation of [your father’s] USDA license.”

 

Ringling also has a lengthy history of failing to comply with the federal Animal Welfare Act. In 2006 alone, the USDA cited the circus numerous times for everything from failing to provide veterinary care to lame elephants to mishandling dangerous animals. Three former Ringling employees have recently gone public with accounts of routine abuse that include bloody beatings.

 

“Considering Ringling’s own history of causing animal suffering, it shouldn’t surprise anyone that the circus would do business with a disgraced exhibitor like Ramos,” says PETA Director Debbie Leahy. “As long as there are circuses like Ringling and trainers like Ramos, one thing is certain: Animals will suffer.”

 

PETA’s complaint to the USDA is available upon request. To view 2006 footage of Ringling’s lame elephants and bullhook abuse, please visit PETA’s Web site Circuses.com.

 

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