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Leading publisher DK – part of Penguin Random House – has agreed to stop promoting animal rides in its travel guides following correspondence with animal rights charity PETA.

In addition to removing all images of animals being ridden and recommendations for taking elephant rides, the DK Eyewitness Travel Guide: Delhi, Agra and Jaipur will also include information about the controversy surrounding captive-elephant exhibits.

DK joins TUI Group – the world’s largest travel and tourism company, which owns TUI and First Choice – as well as STA Travel, Intrepid Travel, and G Adventures in pledging not to promote elephant rides.


PETA Director, Elisa Allen, said: “DK joins dozens of travel companies in rejecting tourist traps that force highly intelligent, social elephants to give rides.

“PETA urges travellers to keep all captive-elephant camps off their itineraries, and DK’s commitment to education will help prevent holidaymakers from inadvertently supporting cruelty to animals.”

The group adds: “Elephants used for rides are often forcibly separated from their mothers, immobilised with tightly bound ropes, and gouged with bullhooks or nail-studded sticks during ‘training’. Some don’t survive the gruelling process, and those who do spend the rest of their lives lugging tourists around or performing tricks under the threat of physical punishment.”