Ljubo, the bear, suffering in a cage in 93-degree heat. Why won’t authorities act?

Ljubo, the bear, suffering in a cage in 93-degree heat. Why won’t authorities act?

Our worst fears have been realized. After briefly being rehomed to an enclosure, Ljubo, a six-year-old brown bear, in the Balkan nation of Montenegro is back in a cage. We have proof that he is being exhibited to the public with no valid zoo license and while his permission to exhibit the bear is under legal challenge.

Animal Survival International (ASI) has been fighting to free Ljubo since we discovered his nightmare existence in 2022.

Ljubo, the bear, suffering in a cage in 93-degree heat. Why won’t authorities act?

At our urging, the Montenegrin veterinary administration allowed an international group of bear experts to visit Ljubo in June. Shortly before the experts arrived, Ljubo’s captor hastily constructed an enclosure adjoining the cage. The bear experts said the enclosure had highlighted many deficiencies in his care, but it was better than the cage. Just this week – in the middle of a blazing hot day – Ljubo was shut in his cage again with no way to reach his larger enclosure or his den to hide from visitor’s eyes.

Now the experts have left, the bear is back in a cage. Ljubo has nowhere to escape from visitors or cool down and is exposed to harsh sunlight in the enclosure. Visitors said he seemed to be suffering from the heat and was visibly panting heavily, pacing and holding the cage bars. They reported he seemed hungry and sad – and they were charged $6.00 (£4.30) to his captor for food for him.

A mountain of evidence shows neglect and lack of proper care.

The bear experts found in their report that there is a complete lack of any previous regular veterinary care or proper record-keeping relating to Ljubo, and it is clear the facility falls far short of meeting any internationally recognized guidelines regarding ongoing veterinary care provided to any animal in its care.

Ljubo, the bear, suffering in a cage in 93-degree heat. Why won’t authorities act?

The experts clearly state that if the facility cannot meet the necessary legal requirements – and there is no sign of this being possible – then a professional and accredited bear sanctuary is a solution.

Ljubo needs a bear sanctuary where ALL his needs can be met.

Ljubo, the bear, suffering in a cage in 93-degree heat. Why won’t authorities act?

The more we investigate the situation, the worse it gets. Worryingly, an investigation by the prosecutor’s office in Montenegro into the deaths of 14 animals at the facility is underway.

Some of our supporters are asking why it is proving so difficult to do the right thing and move Ljubo. The answer is indifference from the authorities and a lack of political will from the government to actually pay attention to Ljubo’s plight. We are increasing our lobbying efforts and pushing legal action, the latest evidence makes this even more urgent. We need your help, we are faced with a man who seems to break the laws with impunity. Put these facts together, and you will understand why it is so important that we keep up the fight for Ljubo and why we so earnestly ask you to stand with us. Please donate right now if you possibly can.

Ljubo, the bear, suffering in a cage in 93-degree heat. Why won’t authorities act?

What must be done is clear. Knowing there is no way in the foreseeable future to implement the experts’ recommendations in Montenegro, the authorities must immediately work to move Ljubo to a proper bear sanctuary, and we have offered to help – with your continued support.

However, it is clear there are those in Montenegro’s officialdom who, for reasons known only to themselves, are opposed to this and who are not committed to changing the situation. To those people, we say: LJUBO HAS SUFFERED ENOUGH. Let reason prevail and allow Ljubo to be moved somewhere where he will be able to live as naturally as possible, cared for by experts.

Ljubo, the bear, suffering in a cage in 93-degree heat. Why won’t authorities act?

It is your donations that have allowed us to get this far, and it is your donations that allow us to continue the fight. Please donate generously right now. LJUBO DESERVES A BETTER LIFE.

Saving animals and the planet,

 

Typically thought of as “bad guys”, vultures (who are heading towards EXTINCTION) are actually quite the opposite - they play a crucial role in stopping the spread of deadly diseases!

Campaign Director
Animal Survival International

P.S. ONLY with your continued support that we can ultimately move Ljubo to a bear sanctuary where he will receive proper care and live a life as close to freedom as possible. Please, donate now.

On June 1st 2023 the following specialists visited Ljubo the captive brown bear at the facility “Zoo Park Prihvatilište i Oporavak Životinja” in Blizna, near Podgorica, Montenegro, to prepare a report on his health and welfare:
Prof. emeritus Duro Huber, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Zagreb, Zagreb, Croatia; Dr. Agnieska Sergiel, Institute of Nature Conservation of Polish Academy of Sciences, Krakow, Poland; Prof. dr. Vedad Skapur, faculty of Agriculture and Food Science, University of Sarajevo, Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzogovina.

Ljubo, the bear, suffering in a cage in 93-degree heat. Why won’t authorities act?

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