We’ve all heard the expression, “An elephant never forgets,” and there is some truth to this statement – elephants are incredibly intelligent. They have tight-knit families, networks of friends, and they socialize in much the same way humans do. Unfortunately, because of their intelligence, elephants also experience trauma in much the same way, which is why the sad story of the relationship between elephants and humans is all the more tragic.

Humans have nearly hunted African elephants into extinction in the pursuit of their tusks which are sold for vast sums in the illegal ivory trade. Experts estimate that one elephant is killed every 15 minutes for its tusks. Humans not done Indian Elephants any favors either, they have been subjugated, enslaved, and forced to endure horrid lives in the tourism industry and there are currently only 35,000 Indian elephants left in the wild.


However, conservationists are fighting hard to protect elephants and Wildlife SOS India is at the forefront of this struggle. Their team of dedicated rescuers works tirelessly to rehabilitate and protect elephants and other wildlife in need. Recently, they got word that an elephant was in desperate need of their help and so they launched a campaign to save him.

Wildlife SOS got word there was an elephant who was going to be taken away by the courts unless they could raise $50,000 dollars – they had 36 hours to raise this sum. So, the organization sent out a Facebook message hoping to raise the requisite funds to save, “The Nameless Elephant.”

Thanks to the generosity of thousands of people around the world, they raised the $50,o00 dollars in record time and were able to rescue, “The Nameless Elephant”!

On Monday, February 6th,  “The Nameless Elephant” was seen by their senior veterinarian, Dr. Yaduraj, and he determined the rescued elephant was a “50-year-old male tusker, who has several wounds on his tail, elbows, and legs.” Most likely these injuries were suffered in the service of his previous captors.

Late on February 6th, Wildlife SOS India announced on their Facebook page, “The news you have all been waiting for… the elephant with no name has arrived safely at our facility.”

After several hours of deliberation, they gave the recent addition to their sanctuary his name: Sanjay. It means “victorious or triumphant” in Hindi.

And here is the epic photo of Sanjay taking his first steps out into the freedom of the Elephant Conservation and Care Center.




Thanks to Wildlife SOS India, this elephant will get to live out his life safe and happy, in their sanctuary. If you would like to donate to Wildlife SOS so they can continue to save endangered wildlife, go their site and learn how you can get involved. For more epic rescues performed by the organization, check out this story about a rescued elephant who spent 46 years in chains.

Image source: Wildlife SOS India/Facebook