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Russian Restaurant feeds captive bears a diet of junk food

Russian Restaurant feeds captive bears a diet of junk food and beer

World Animal Protection, the world’s largest animal protection NGO, has stepped in to respond to a desperate appeal to save two bears kept in horrific conditions at a restaurant in Russia.

For the last 20 years, since they were tiny cubs, the bears have been held in captivity outside a restaurant in Sochi, Russia. Kept in filthy, cramped cages these defenceless animals have been denied a natural life, and instead fed a diet of junk food by guests and even made to drink beer. Instead of grass and earth beneath their paws, home is a barren concrete bunker behind a steel fence.

Protests over their conditions echoed around the world, but the situation seemed increasingly desperate as it appeared there was nowhere to relocate the bears to safety.

World Animal Protection will work closely with local authorities to help rescue and relocate the two animals to the pioneering bear sanctuary they fund in Romania, run by Asociatia Milioane de Prieteni (AMP).

This week a court order also comes into effect, making the local Ministry of Natural Resources responsible for seizing the bears from the current owner. World Animal Protection are petitioning the Ministry of Natural Resources in the region to give active assistance to help facilitate the movement of the bears from Sochi to the new home that has been arranged for them at the Romanian Bear Sanctuary.

Bridget Vercoe, New Zealand Country Director for World Animal Protection said: “After years of neglect, poor diet and abuse, these incredibly vulnerable bears are in urgent need of veterinary care and attention. Reports are that one of them is completely blind. We couldn’t ignore the desperate appeals to step in and save these poor animals, so we have committed to rescue them and our experts are on standby to act.

We are working with our local partners, Big Hearts Foundation, to rescue the bears from their miserable conditions and to move them to the space and freedom of the AMP Romanian Bear Sanctuary, so that the first time in their 20-year lives they will the experience freedom that has been denied them for so long.”

World Animal Protection works in countries around the world to stop the use of wild animals in entertainment. They have over 20 years’ experience in rescuing bears from cruelty such as bear dancing, use in bear baiting or caged for entertainment purposes. Experts in the field, the organisation currently works with sanctuaries in Romania and Pakistan.


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