May 22, 2013

‘Forest warrior’ loses fight for life

It is with immense sadness that we announce the passing of one of our most recently rescued bears, Vidaar (pictured). 

Despite around the clock expert veterinary care by WSPA local partner the Bioresource Research Centre (BRC) Vidaar, which means forest warrior, passed away suddenly at the WSPA-funded sanctuary in Pakistan as a result of long term chronic illness developed during his years of captivity.   

After years of trauma from use in bear baiting and severely malnourished on arrival, Vidaar appears to have already been fighting chronic disease when he was taken to the sanctuary. 

Post mortem results have shown he had an enlarged gall bladder and other organs showed signs of infection and despite the best, expert care of BRC staff he was too weak to survive and he passed away. 

WSPA and BRC staff, already devastated by the recent loss of Lucia are very saddened by Vidaar’s sudden death but we will continue to work to rescue the remaining bears trapped in this cruel practice and provide the best care for the 20 bears that are happily living at the sanctuary.

Surviving a life of trauma and poor health

Most bears come to the WSPA-funded sanctuary in very poor shape after enduring years of chronic stress and malnutrition with no veterinary treatment. Bears commonly arrive with disease and injuries including:

  • weak immune systems 
  • parasite infestations
  • blindness or heavily impaired vision
  • wounds to muzzle, ears and eyes

While some of these conditions may have been caused through fight related injuries, it is generally believed that the inadequate nutrition, frequently suffered infections and poor care are the main cause for blindness and weak immune systems.

A weak immune system is a significant problem for bears because even with the best medical treatment and care, the bears may already be suffering from chronic disease and could develop secondary illness that compromises their already fragile health. Sadly, not every bear that has been rescued is able to survive. 
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