Sheer joy as rescued sun bear waits 15 years to make her first ever friends

05 March 2019

Recently rescued sun bear Aurora is well into middle age for her species, but feels just like a cub again thanks to her five new best friends.

After 15 years held in a barren cage, sun bear Aurora was rescued from a long, desolate life as an exotic pet in December 2018.

Just two months after being freed by Animals Asia and brought to the charity’s award-winning rescue centre in Vietnam, this brave little sun bear once again felt the sun on her fur as she walked on grass for the first time since being poached as a cub.

Now, just a few weeks later, she’s amazed her carers again by instantly making friends with five other sun bear orphans at the sanctuary.

Aurora 1 copy

Animals Asia Bear Manager Sarah van Herpt said:

“Aurora has simply taken my breath away. This little bear is incredibly sweet and playful and just couldn’t wait to make friends with the other bears. She met all five of the group – all orphans just like her – and they have been getting along amazingly well. Aurora is enriching the lives of all the bears in the enclosure and she seems to be loving every moment with her new family.”

Sun bears Aurora, Goldie, Sassy, Annemarie, Murphy and Layla all live in an outdoor enclosure filled with trees, a swimming pool and climbing frames. They are able to express natural behaviours such as foraging and the group provide emotional support for each other – a situation made possible by the generous support of Miomojo, a fashion company which currently part-sponsors the bears.

In the first week of meeting the group, Aurora wrestled with her new friends, played with them on the grass, ate and foraged next to them and even spent time sharing sleeping baskets with them.

Most encouragingly, Aurora instantly struck up a friendship with Annemarie, one of the most traumatised bears at the sanctuary.

Sarah said:

“When Annemarie met Aurora, it was love at first sight! Aurora was fascinated by Annemarie and followed her around like a little shadow. They even played together for a little while which is very rare for Annemarie who is still very timid even years after her rescue.”

Aurora eats ice block copy

It is hoped that the positive relationship developing between Aurora and Annemarie could help both bears to overcome their traumatic pasts and to enjoy the future together.

Sarah said:

“This has been the most amazing period of Aurora’s life and she has taken all the enormous changes in her stride. It was wonderful to see her rest in her basket after a long day playing with her new friends looking very pleased with herself, rolling around and playing with Goldie. We know she is going to be very happy here.

The Miomojo Cub House is part-funded by Miomojo – a responsible fashion company from Italy making gorgeous fashion accessories that don’t harm animals or the environment. Their Ethicool collection is available now with a percentage of proceeds funding Animals Asia’s work to care for the Miomojo Cub House bears.