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A plea to help end the atrocities of bear bile farming

post #1 of 3
Thread Starter 
Hey everyone!

Being a forum filled with animal lovers, I just know that this is the right place to share about something that has recently, but most jarringly, touched my heart - the atrocities of the bear bile farming industry (mostly in China, as well as Vietnam, not too sure about other parts of the world), and ongoing rescue efforts. A friend showed me to a website which really opened my eyes. I will share the website address with you later in this post. (prior apologies if I seem to get more and more agitated as I type!)

As a brief introduction, bear bile is collected as medication for an assortment of ailments and is mostly sold in Traditional Chinese Medicine shops in the form of powder, pills etc.

Bear bile is extracted from living Moon Bears in the most inhumane, cruel method. Young bears are caught from the wild and stuffed into small cages. (Some trappers use traps which may result in a bear losing its paw if caught) These bears are then left to grow in these cages until they can grow no more. Not once are these animals exercised or cared for, even in the most fundamental sense. The most barbaric is yet to come. For the rest of their lives in captivity, these bears suffer painful catheters inserted into their abdomens which drain their bile. Even the 'free drip' method, which is bile extraction without a catheter, and is touted as humane by bear farmers, causes immeasurable pain as the permanent wounds made in the abdomen get infected.

Bears crushed into cages way too small for them, with only pain as accompaniment, often resort to banging their head against the metal bars of their cages, biting their cages, and even chewing their paws to distract themselves. Many bears succumb to peritonisis, liver cancer and many other painful, fatal diseases caused by the crude surgical methods bear farmers use to extract their bile.

What makes it worse, is that bear bile as a form of medication actually HAS herbal alternatives and there is absolutely no need to torture so many thousands of bears. Someone has to put a stop to this needlessly cruel industry, and happily, there is an organisation which has taken that one small step in the right direction - AnimalsAsia. Some of you may have seen the documentary featured on Animal Planet called "Moon Bears Journey to Freedom".

Do visit their website www.animalsasia.org as well as visit this blog www.animalsasia.org/blog, which documents the rescue of more moon bears and the recovery of some brave bears who have pulled through to enjoy happy days in bear paradise in a sanctuary in Chengdu, China.

I have refrained from putting up pictures, as some are extremely graphic.. But I must admit that it was the pictures that did me in. I spent an entire night reading the blog and learning of the dreadful, horrendous state bears in such farms are in... the suffering of these poor bears is on a scale that you would never imagine if you just heard about it or read about it.

Please, if you have the means, lets do something for the cause to end the bear bile industry!

It could be something small, like educating those around you never to consume animal parts as medication, because more often than not, there are herbal alternatives... Or it could be donating to AAF. I believe these good people need all the help we can give. Do visit the websites linked above and see for yourself the atrocities that these poor, poor bears are being put through.

They must be rescued!

To end off, I leave you with a paragraph which I have copied from the AAF website detailing the arrival of the first 63 bears released to the AAF in December 2000.

"As they arrive on trucks in rusting cages, with ages ranging from cubs to middle and old aged, our senses reel as we look in horror at dull, miserable eyes and smell the stench of rot and decay from infected and pain wracked bodies.

But as we offer them fruit through the bars of the cage, they gently purse their lips and take them slowly from our fingers. Our emotions range from elation that they will now receive only kindness, to anger that they have been so cruelly abused for something so easily replaced with herbs. Our greatest consolation is that the authorities have closed the farms so that no more bears will ever take their place."

Many more bears are imprisoned in their metal cages, doomed to face a lifetime of sorrow and pain if we humans don't do anything to save them. Once again, I urge you to look through the website and, at least, spread the word.
post #2 of 3
Thanks for posing this thread - it was well writen and brought an issue to me tat I hadn't yet been aware of. I've favorited the blog and am no keeing a eye on it. These poor souls..bear bile farming has to be one of the most cruel indstries. I'm just glad that their might be light at he end of the tunnel sometimes in the hopefully near future.

Praying for the bears.
post #3 of 3
Thread Starter 
Hi Cocoalily! Thanks so much for reading my post and reading AnimalsAsia's blog and website. If possible, perhaps you could assist to spread the word by sharing these two websites and the good work AnimalsAsia are doing to TCS friends and even personal family and friends.

Bear bile farming seems virtually unheard of in the Western world, and largely ignored by the very Asians who happily consume bile extracted in such a mindlessly cruel way. The more people get to hear about this and read about the atrocities and learn about how rescued bears are now enjoying life to the fullest at the rescue centre will definitely help the rescue effort!
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