Rapper French Montana has defended himself against allegations of animal cruelty after hiring an elephant for his birthday.

The “Pop That” hitmaker and his girlfriend Iggy Azalea came under fire earlier this week, after they shared snaps of themselves online, posing beside a bejeweled elephant, which had been placed in the backyard of Montana’s Los Angeles mansion.

Alongside one image of the animal, which had jewelry placed on its head and around its ankles, he wrote, “I love animals more than people!! Happy bday to me positive vibes at the Casa (home).”

The posts prompted many Instagram followers to attack the couple for engaging in what they felt was a form of animal cruelty, but Montana has now hit back, claiming the elephant in question leads a privileged life.

He simply tells TMZ.com, “The elephant’s living better than a lot of people!”

Fellow rapper Iggy has yet to comment on the controversy.