For those who may be searching for a bit of levity or love today, here are Maia and Guida.
Lately their bond with each other has grown much stronger. They have always spent time together, but recently they want to touch, lean and stand side by side much more often. There have been several positive shifts over the past month and this is one of them.
As many of you already know, Maia and Guida did not have an amicable past. Maia was very aggressive towards Guida when she was off of her chains (at the farm owned by the circus lawyer), would push her, knock her down and continue to push on her. If you watch the video of Guida unloading from the trailer when they arrived here at sanctuary, you can see how tentative she is to even touch Maia, although there is a gate that separated them.
This began to shift overnight. We slept at the barn and there was a lot of touching and vocalizations going on all night- it seems they had a lot to talk through. They tested who would be dominant a bit at first, a little trunk over the head, helping themselves to the other’s food, pushing in between the fence and the other elephant, but nothing dramatic. Now even that seems like a lifetime ago when we watch them.
So…. when someone tells you that an elephant is antisocial or doesn’t get along with other elephants and they are in a zoo or circus, always keep in mind they are a product of their environment. When given space, understanding and the ability and comfort to simply walk far away, they are able to rediscover what it means to be a herd member and how big of a part of being an elephant it truly is.
Turn up your volume and listen to the girls!