An elephant ‘out for a walk’ caused chaos in the Italian region of Calabria this week.
The animal had escaped from the travelling Moira Orfei circus, according to the Il Messaggero newspaper.
It then meandered down the SS18 road in the town of Amantea.
Drivers were left shocked at the sight out their windows and slowed to take pictures and videos of the spectacle.
The elephant was marching to a nearby supermarket called Eurospin.
It kept to the right-hand side of the road and didn’t seem disturbed by the cars whizzing past
In one clip shared online, a man can be heard saying: ‘He is going for a stroll! An elephant at the Eurospin!’
The elephant also spent time at a nearby beach, it was reported.
Intanto in Calabria un Elefante gira indisturbato per le vie del paese dirigendosi verso LâEurospin pic.twitter.com/HEoUB3v9nQ
According to Italian media, it was quickly tracked down by circus bosses and brought back to their base.
Il Messaggero reported: ‘The owners of the circus found him in the supermarket parking lot and took him back to the cage, ending his day of “freedom” apparently without major trauma.
‘Among the many shares and ironic comments on social media, animal welfare associations have arisen denouncing the precarious conditions of the animal.
‘Fortunately, despite the risks of the walk, no harm was done to people or to the poor animal.’
In Italy, a law was introduced last year to phase out the use of animals in circuses.
The practice is forbidden in much of the western world.
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