Sirko and Ruta have been known to FOUR PAWS for some time. The male and female bears had lived their whole existence inside a barren concrete enclosure at a hotel and restaurant in Skole, Ukraine. FOUR PAWS has been fighting for years to close down the poorly kept bear enclosure at this facility and has already rescued bears Lelya, Dasha, Frol and Frosia from that location and given them a new life at our BEAR SANCTUARY Domazhyr, where they experienced for the first time what a species-appropriate life for a bear can be.
Despite our best efforts, we were not allowed to rescue Sirko and Ruta for quite some time, but we never gave up hope on making it happen. Finally, after many discussions and agreements...we were able to return to Skole and give Sirko and Ruta a new life at our sanctuary! However, by the time we returned Sirko and Ruta weren’t the only bears there anymore; we were surprised to hear that Ruta gave birth to a cub in January 2021!
On June 22, 2021, we rescued Sirko, Ruta, and their little cub Andor and brought them to our BEAR SANCTUARY Domazhyr. The poor cub was removed from his parents at a young age and hand-reared. Because of this, Andor has to remain separated from his parents, as it would be very risky and dangerous to re-introduce them at this stage.
According to our veterinarian Dr. Marc Gölkel, all bears are in good condition. However, Sirko and Ruta do have dental problems, which will be treated once they have adjusted to their new surroundings. once adjusted, Sirko will also be neutered to prevent the two from breeding again. Cub Andor appears to be healthy and was microchipped, vaccinated, and dewormed.
After only a couple of weeks at the sanctuary, all three bears have settled in wonderfully! Each of them loves swimming and climbing the structures in their enclosures.
They are joyful and already replacing the sad days of their past with new, happy ones. They all have great appetites and some of their favorite treats so far are peanuts, peaches, strawberries, and cherries.
Andor's cruel separation from his parents is one of the many reasons why people should never support attractions that allow the public to handle wild baby animals, as such interactions are detrimental to both the well-being of the young cubs and the mothers' whom they were torn away from. (For more information on how to be an animal-friendly traveler, visit Travel Kind.)
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New beginnings and new friends for Andor
Just a few weeks after his arrival, three cubs that were rescued from a petting zoo in Ukraine were transferred to our sanctuary from another facility. With such an opportunity to be had, the on-site team have been working hard to introduce Andor to some new friends – and so far, so good! First, he was introduced to Jenny, the most confident of the trio. Although both cubs were shy at first, it wasn’t long before they were comfortable with each other. Next, all four spent some time together - stay tuned for more updates soon!