Shivering Elephants Can’t Get Warm, Then Local Women Crochet Enormous Sweaters

by Laura Caseley
Laura is a writer, illustrator, and artist living in New York City.

Elephants typically don’t have to worry about the cold, living in generally warm climates. But the weather can do unexpected things sometimes, and then they need a little help.

Currently, there’s a cold snap happening in Northern India, and that’s where Wildlife SOS Elephant Conservation and Care Center is located. The residents are cold.

The sanctuary is home to elephants rescued from years of labor and exploitation. At the sanctuary, they can spend their days roaming, eating, exploring, and enjoying the company of one another and their human caretakers.

When the weather turned cold, those humans were willing to step in again and provide a hand, this time in the form of sweaters.

Really, really big sweaters.

We’ve seen all kinds of animals in sweaters, including hamsters, lambs, and chickens, but these are definitely some of the largest. Local villagers turned out to crochet sweaters to keep the chilly pachyderms warm.

According to SOS founder Kartick Satyanarayan, it took about four weeks to make each sweater, and that means so far, only three of the 23 rescue elephants have been gifted custom sweaters. Fortunately, the others have blankets, so they’re being kept warm, too.

It seems like no matter how big or small you are, a bright sweater makes everything better.

[H/T: The Dodo]

Elephants huddle around women crocheting

An unexpected bout of cold weather in Northern India is making the elephants at Wildlife SOS elephant sanctuary a little chilly.

Luckily, a team of talented locals knew exactly what to do: they started crocheting.

Elephant wearing colorful sweater

They made some truly stylish elephant-sized sweaters for three lucky elephants. The sweaters were bright and colorful, and two even had sleeves.


Women help elephant put on sweater

Each sweater took about four weeks to make, so right now, only three elephants have them.

There are 20 more elephants at the sanctuary, and they plan to keep making them so they can all have one should there be cold weather in the future.

Elephant wearing blanket

The other elephants aren’t left in the cold, though. They have blankets to stay warm. They may not be as bright or have that handmade flair, but they do the job.

Elephants wearing sweaters

That means these elephants, many of whom have experienced trauma and abuse in their lives, can be comfortable and cozy no matter the weather. And they look pretty great, too.

Elephants walking in water

It is important to keep our elephants protected from the bitter cold during this extreme winter, as they are weak and vulnerable having suffered so much abuse making them susceptible to ailments such as pneumonia,” Satyanarayan explains.

“The cold also aggravates their arthritis which is a common issue that our rescued elephants have to deal with.”

Elephants holds up freedom flag

Wildlife SOS is currently raising money to buy more land, which will allow them to give even more animals good, safe homes.

Elephants grazing

You can help by donating, and you can also buy an elephant a blanket to make sure they stay warm this winter. You can also see all the animals SOS cares for on Facebook and Instagram.

Watch the video below to see the elephants showing off their new sweaters, and SHARE these giant sweaters with anyone who loves seeing a cozy animal!

Due to restrictions, this video cannot
be viewed in your region.