This weekend marks the last elephant circus performance in Dane County

DANE COUNTY, Wis. (WMTV) -- This weekend marks the last time the Zor Shrine Circus will perform with elephants in Dane County.

The Dane County Board passed a ban on performing elephants back in 2012. But because of the circus’ existing contracts, the ban did not take effect right away.

Animal rights activists have long protested the use of elephants, citing abuse and inhumane conditions.

“The day they're born, they take them from their mothers and then they start abusing them almost right away, they chain them down,” says Rick Bogle, a board of directors member with Alliance for Animals.

Circus owners say they take good care of all animals, and that even without elephants, the show must go on.

“It's unfortunate for the kids, because they really like to see the elephants up close in an environment they never could see elephants anywhere else. But we will move on,” says Brett Carden, Co-owner of the circus.

Carden says he is looking forward to continuing performance in Madison. Activists say they will continue to protest the use of exotic animals for entertainment.