By Jamie Smith
A circus trainer has shown off his elephant’s incredible tricks – which he insists comes from having ‘perfect trust’ with the animal.
Rene Casselly from Budapest, Hungary, is a seventh generation show performer and animal trainer – and has proved it certainly is possible to teach an old elephant new tricks.
Amazing video footage shows his elephant, Kimba, helping him dunk a basketball, flip into the air, juggle, climb a wall and even letting Rene stand on his tusks.
But Rene insists Kimba is healthy, happy and well-looked after – kept in equal conditions to elephants in zoos – and are trained in the same way dogs would be, with positive reinforcement and treats.
The 22-year-old said: “These videos show the trust animals and humans can have for each other. We can do amazing and unique stuff together as a team.
“Kimba recently helped me to dunk a ball into a basket – it was a dangerous stunt which can only work with perfect teamwork, trust and respect for each other.
“I’m always trying to do things with my elephants that have not been seen before, just recently I taught my elephant to throw a ball into a basket from behind the three-point line.
“Elephants are so much smarter then we think. My feeling about this is pretty good.”‘