Save one meal each month for moon bears


This is Wilfred. He lives in Chengdu, China. He’s an early-middle-age moon bear (not because he’s from the Moon but because like everyone in his species, he has a moon-shape patch of yellow fur on his chest). He likes watermelon and loves to climb. On paper, he’s my sponsored bear. Wilfred is blind in both eyes, most likely a result of the poor treatment for bile-farmed bears. But at least he’s alive and now cared for in an animal shelter, something that thousands of his species can only dream of while being barred in iron cages, fed only gruel and extracted bile twice a day. Bile farming — In Asia, there’s a belief that bear bile, a digestive juice produced from the liver and stored in the gall bladder, has medicinal effects. This belief originates from China, spreads to the neighboring countries, and results in the shameful practice of bile farming. Wild bears are hunted and kept captive in “bile farms”, where their abdomens are pierced to extract the bile from the gall bladders twice a day. Only rarely is there anesthesia, their abdomens are either stabbed repeatedly until the gall bladder is found, or the […]

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