How elephant spines can become visibly deformed when forced to carry heavy loads of tourists as part of the wildlife entertainment industry.
We are thrilled to announce the arrival of our latest rescue – meet elderly elephant Nam Chok.
Nam Chok is suspected to have been caught from the wild, and has been in captivity for decades ever since. She has recently been working at an elephant trekking camp in Pattaya, where elephants are used to entertain and give rides to paying tourists.
When our vet team and wildlife experts arrived at the camp, Nam Chok still had her riding saddle on and worked until her last day. Thankfully, her owner had agreed to let Nam Chok retire, and WFFT stepped in to offer her a sanctuary home at our elephant rescue centre.
Now, after a journey from Pattaya to our sanctuary in Phetchaburi, Nam Chok has arrived and is settling into her new home, where she will no longer have to work and can live the rest of her life in peace.
WFFT’s staff and volunteers greeted her on arrival, and had prepared a welcoming buffet of fresh fruit and specially-made banana balls, which Nam Chok tucked into straight away.
On the walk to her new habitat, she passed fellow rescue elephants Duenphen and See Puak, and it was emotional to see them all communicate with each other by raising their trunks.
Nam Chok has scars from a lifetime of working, which likely includes some years in the logging industry, as well as her more recent work at the elephant trekking camp. She is startlingly thin and suffers from digestive issues. She is also blind in one eye, after she was injured with a bull hook.
Now under WFFT’s care, she will receive 24/7 medical treatment from our expert veterinary team, and also enjoy a balanced and nutritious diet of fresh fruits and vegetables.
She is slightly smaller than some of our other older, female rescue elephants, and seems to be very calm and gentle by nature.
We will now provide lifetime care for Nam Chok alongside our 23 other rescue elephants. They all live happily in our large elephant enclosures, which are up to 44 acres each and have natural trees, lakes and grazing areas. Each rescue elephant eats around 300 kg of food every day.
To help support our wonderful herd of rescue elephants, please consider making a donation, or even “adopting” one of these gentle giants via our sponsorship programme. Every donation helps us support these amazing animals and give them a second chance at life. Donate here.