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    • 19 Nov, 2015

    £10,000 Appeal for Orphaned Bear Cubs’ Journey to Freedom

    The Mayhew Animal Home is appealing for donations to help pay for the transit journey of three orphaned female bear cubs from a temporary dog shelter in Tbilisi, Georgia to the Arcturos Bear Sanctuary in Northern Greece where they will be able to live in a safe and natural environment. Please donate here.

    The bear cubs were discovered on the streets of Tbilisi, one in a rubbish bin, after the city was severely flooded in June this year. However, it has been established that these bear cubs, who are now 9 months old, were not from Tbilisi Zoo where bear enclosures were destroyed by the floods. The cubs, picked up by the authorities during the emergency relief operations were taken to Tbilisi Municipal Dog Shelter as there were no other facilities where they could go at the time.

    Caroline Yates, CEO, The Mayhew Animal Home and accompanied by the Mayhew International veterinary team, visited Tbilisi and the shelter post the floods to provide veterinary training and emergency assistance for companion animals. It was at the shelter that Caroline saw the three cubs. They are currently being looked after by shelter staff, however, because the shelter is geared towards the short-term care of stray dogs, the accommodation is not clearly not suitable for the bear cubs in the long term.

    Caroline said, “When I visited the Tbilisi Municipal Dog Shelter and saw these poor bear cubs I knew that we had to help them and find them a more natural habitat at such a critical time in their young lives. Working with Georgia’s Ministry of the Environment & Natural Resources and Tbilisi’s Animal Monitoring Agency we are doing everything we can to secure their safe passage to Arcturos in Greece.”

    Mayhew International Bear Cub Appeal

    The Mayhew Animal Home called on international wildlife charity the Born Free Foundation to step in and assist the three cubs. Born Free have launched their appeal Bear Me in Mind which is raising money to ensure the care of the cubs at the Arcturos sanctuary and also a fourth male bear cub called Ushka who is currently a resident at the sanctuary. The Mayhew is working with the relevant Tbilisi authorities to arrange export and transportation of the cubs according to CITES regulations. Born Free are working with Arcturos to expedite the rescue and relocation of the cubs. It is planned that the bears will live in a new bear enclosure providing an environment with plenty of natural enrichment where they will be rehabilitated and able to hopefully be released to live as bears should and not be subjected to a life in captivity.

    The target to raise for the bears is £10,000 which will cover:

    • Enrichment and some supplementary diet foods (nuts, honey, berries) whilst the cubs are still at the Tbilisi Dog Shelter
    • All export licenses and documentation required to move the bear cubs from one country to another
    • Special IATA cages for transportation of wildlife
    • Transportation costs from Tbilisi to Greece – this is likely to be by air

    The Mayhew Animal Home are asking their supporters to donate what they can and help fund the journey for these orphaned bear cubs so that they can reach their new home in northern Greece. Please donate here.

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