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A visit from Marc Bekoff

Recently we had a very special visitor at our China sanctuary – world-renowned US animal behaviourist Dr Marc Bekoff. Marc was in China to promote his books, which have recently been translated into Chinese. This was his second visit to our rescue centre and it was such a pleasure to have him back on site.

As well as getting re-acquainted with some of our bear residents, Marc also accompanied us on a visit to the Qiming Rescue Centre, which is caring for the dogs we rescued from the earthquake zone, as well as strays rescued from the streets of Chengdu. We asked Marc if he would name some of the newly rescued dogs – and he gladly obliged – Henry, Stevie, Matilde and Lady Lobster.

Poor Henry (pictured here) had been caught stealing food from a butcher who had chopped off half his leg.

Somehow, this lovely dog has survived and Marc assisted Senior Vet Heather in his surgery to remove the rest of his right front leg. He’s recovering well. Stevie is blind (named after Stevie Wonder) and also needs surgery to have his eyes taken out and Lady Lobster had a broken leg/foot that healed like a lobster claw. Matilde (pictured here with Heather) arrived at the rescue centre weighing about 8 pounds when she should weigh about 35-40.

Marc also got to spend some time at our Chengdu sanctuary, where he clearly felt right at home as you can see from his email:


“This afternoon was amazing! First I had the golden opportunity to watch Jasper and Frank play and play, and then Delaney came onto the scene. Then Jasper and Delaney played and chased one another and played below Sausage who was trying to rest – and then Jasper went into the water and all was well. These bears are amazing – having been tortured for upwards of 15 years and then recovering and playing and enjoying life….”

Here is a photo of Marc with Jasper the spokesbear for peace and love, and some more pics that Marc snapped of Delaney, Jasper’s best friend, resting and Jasper taking a dip.

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