Wildlife SOS’ anti-poaching unit, ForestWatch, rescued a female sloth bear from Jharkhand, now named ‘Suma’ with the help of the Forest dept, in the month of May, before she could be smuggled into Nepal to be sold as a dancing bear. The poachers had pierced her muzzle, and a coarse rope had been drawn through the raw wound. Her canines had been smashed out and she was in considerable pain.On relocation to the Agra Bear Rescue Facility, she underwent a thorough medical examination and was placed under quarantine for the initial period of her recovery. Preliminary veterinary inspections revealed that the bear was highly stressed and displaying the stereotypical behavior of traumatised bears. Her coat was dry and rough and her broken canines and ulcerated mouth required long term care. Her physical condition was further evidence of the mistreatment and improper handling she had been subjected to.
Our trained team has dealt with victims of poaching incidents and mistreated dancing bears for years, and identifying the bear’s deteriorating state, they quickly swung into action. Suma was rehydrated and cooled down, to eliminate any possibilities of additional stress, following which plans were made regarding her diet. Since her mouth had wounds in it she at first subsisted solely on a bland liquid diet. Slowly, the staff began introducing solid, nutritious food into her meals and more importantly lots of love into her life. Her ordeal left her fearful and suspicious, but this has just encouraged her keepers to work harder at developing a bond of trust and affection.
Our lovely new lady is slowly recuperating under the watchful eyes of the staff at the Agra Bear Rescue Facility and we all have our hopes up for a speedy recovery so she can be introduced to her new companions at the facility. Suma has a lot to look forward to at the centre, from a rich, varied diet and a whole lot of friends to have fun with, challenging enrichments and, most importantly, a life free from pain.
We’re all really excited to follow all her upcoming adventures at her new home, and witness her transformation into a free, healthy bear. If you want to support the care and treatment of the bears at our facility, consider donating to our efforts by following this LINK.