Peter Egan: Moon bears changed my life
12 June 2014
I have been UK Ambassador for Animals Asia for two years now. Visiting what I will now call "our" sanctuary in Chengdu in January 2013 was a life changing experience for me. To be able to witness close up the great work done by Jill Robinson and her team, to both repair and rehabilitate these wounded and in some cases broken moon bears, is both inspiring and deeply moving. It was also my first opportunity to meet my namesake Peter Bear. Peter Bear was the only male out of six bears rescued in January 2013. He had literally grown into his cage – his iron prison. He may never have stood up in his life, never have stretched his remarkable body. The first time he stood in his recovery cage, which literally shook with the effort of his standing, the team watched with tears in their eyes and I read the report with tears in mine.
In the intervening year and a half since his rescue Peter B has gone from strength to strength, thanks to the great work from the team and the facilities in our remarkable sanctuary. He has bonded with Shamrock and is now in the process of bonding – with more than a little possessiveness from Shamrock – with Jonah and Teddy in house 7. I have watched Peter Bear develop trust, his wonderful warm personality, and his great sense of fun.
This is how moon bears should spend their lives – preferably in the wild – but while this horrible, shocking business of bile farms exist I thank God for Animals Asia. I am proud to be their ambassador and proud to be the surrogate parent of my wonderful Peter Bear. I am also both thrilled and relieved that he is in such safe and capable hands.
It is incredibly inspiring to see the great support both for Animals Asia and Animal Welfare in general growing at such a rapid rate in China. Testament to this is the recent Nanning rescue Peace by Piece, turning a bile farm into a sanctuary with the complete co-operation of the farm owner. While the cruelty continues we need the continuing and developing backing from our fantastic supporters.
Animals Asia's motto is, "Until the Cruelty Ends" – I would add, "Making the Impossible-Possible."
Animals Asia Ambassador Peter Egan will proudly be hosting our forthcoming live auction at Gilgamesh restaurant in London on Thursday 19 June. Very limited tickets are still available for this intimate gathering. Follow this link for the chance to meet Peter and other Animals Asia ambassadors in person along with Animals Asia founder and CEO Jill Robinson MBE.