bear sanctuary DOMAZHYR


In May 2016, the foundation stone was laid for one of our youngest bear sanctuaries close to the Ukrainian city of Lviv (Lemberg): BEAR SANCTUARY Domazhyr. The first construction phase, covering roughly 19 acres, was completed in 2017. BEAR SANCTUARY Domazhyr currently has 19 bears and will be expanded in the coming years to include further enclosures. The long-term plan is to create enough space for up to 30 bears, who will be rescued from conditions that are not appropriate for these animals. 

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, as a security measure, our sanctuary is closed to the public until further notice. The safety of our visitors, staff, and animals is always our highest priority. During this time, we will continue to ensure that our animals are being provided with everything they need. We hope to open again very soon and apologize for any inconvenience. 

Bear-baiting banned since 2015

Bear- baiting is a practice used by hunters to train hunting dogs to sniff out, corral, trap and kill bears. To do this, bears are tied up daily by a chain around their neck with minimal capacity, if any, to defend themselves against dogs that attack them.

After training, the bears are confined to small, dismal cages. They're deprived of any quality of life and standard of care. The next day this vicious cycle repeats itself despite any wounds sustained from the previous day.

Although bear baiting has been outlawed, it still continues illegally.

BEAR SANCTUARY Domazhyr represents an important step to end bear-baiting. By housing the last fighting bears at BEAR SANCTUARY Domazhyr, FOUR PAWS – with the support of the Ukrainian authorities – hopes to end this cruel practice once and for all.

On the basis of our initiative, a new animal welfare law was adopted in 2015. Since then, forcing wolves or bears to fight dogs is prohibited.

Good News!

FOUR PAWS freed Kvitka from a cage at a hunting station in the Ukraine.

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