From meat dog in China to pampered friend and celebrity in the UK! Such was the journey of Twizzle, who very nearly ended up in a restaurant in southern China at the beginning of 2009. Twizzle was one of 149 “meat” dogs en-route to the grim live-animal markets of Guangzhou when the truck was intercepted by a Chengdu animal-welfare charity, which called and asked for our help.
Tuesday, 5th of May: A shocked silence as the digital image came into view. Crystal, our elderly bear rescued in October 2000, was lying on the X-ray table, having had images taken of her arthritic hips and spine.
Just recently, Caroline Bullock from Animals in Photos asked if I'd like to run a quick and easy mouth-swab DNA test on Eddie to determine his “roots”. I was intrigued and thought worth giving it a try – particularly as no one knows where Eddie originated from.
Anna and our South Devon Support Group have been just fabulous over the years, raising funds and awareness and even sending little messages to the bears when times are hard. Anna's husband Brian is the now famous Moonie in that neck of the woods and dresses up in the hot and heavy bear costume to the delight of the crowds.
Tuesday, 9am and Kylie is the first bear on the hospital surgery table following Oliver who had his surgery on the floor of the truck on the road. A brown bear with large, strong forelimbs, but weighing in at quite a small 149kg, Kylie is already benefiting from a healthy diet and scarfing down everything offered. Still, she is thin and the only bear says vet Monica whose femoral pulse she can feel in her skeletal back leg.
Someone recently sent this link to the BBC World Service: One Planet - Animals & Us.
If you're having a bad day, just click here and smile a big smile at the antics of Podge and Benji in these short film clips taken by our Australia Donor Development and Administration Manager Jude Siekmann recently after we all returned from rescuing bears in Shandong.
Kirsty, our Vet in Hanoi has just sent over this wonderful update about our two newly rescued family members in Vietnam. The team there, led by Tuan, has done a phenomenal job in rescuing two bears from a truly horrible existence and bringing them safely back to our sanctuary in Tam Dao.
This blog is to give thanks from the heart to the various members of the team that made such a difficult rescue in China so safe and successful. My admiration for our staff members below is boundless and I make no apologies for such a long, long list, except to say a profuse apology if I have inadvertently left anyone out.
Bright and early on Friday morning we had an unusual but very welcome visit from some Buddhist monks who had travelled 2,000kms in a 30-hour train journey from Jiangsu Province to pay their respects to the new bears.