PAWS Update:
Maggie Undergoes Second Dental Procedure
by Dr. Jackie Gai, PAWS Director of Veterinary Services
On April 18th, African elephant Maggie underwent a second dental procedure of mammoth proportions at ARK 2000. A team of 28 animal care professionals worked together to safely put Maggie under general anesthesia and address her dental problems. The team was organized and led by representatives of the Colyer Institute, and included professionals from the University of California at Davis School of Veterinary Medicine, the Oakland Zoo, the University of Tennessee College of Veterinary Medicine, and 15 members of PAWS' elephant care and veterinary staff. It "takes a village" to accomplish a procedure of this size, and every individual played a significant role.

One of the dentists works on Maggie's teeth.
Maggie's dental team was made up of five people, including two veterinarians and a dentist who treats both humans and animals. Surprisingly, elephants have a very small mouth relative to their enormous body size. There is actually room for only one person to perform work inside the oral cavity at a time (photo, right). Heavy equipment and power tools are necessary to place the elephant's head and mouth in the proper position and to trim or extract their massive teeth.

While Maggie sleeps comfortably on a deep bed of sand, the anesthesia team (left side of photo) provides oxygen and I.V. support as the dentists work on her teeth.

General anesthesia is a very delicate and tricky procedure for an elephant. Elephants can suffocate under the weight of their own organs if they lie down in certain positions, so it was critically important to carefully and quickly assist Maggie onto her side once the anesthetic drugs began to take effect. Strength, special equipment and choreography are all necessary to assure safe positioning. PAWS' president, Ed Stewart, led members of our elephant care staff in both assisting Maggie down and giving her support in getting up at the end of the procedure. The anesthesia team was composed of 12 people, each with a specific task such as administering I.V. fluids or anesthetic drugs, monitoring vital signs and maintaining ventilation.

Members of PAWS' elephant care staff, led by ARK 2000 sanctuary manager Brian Busta (far left), stand by to give Maggie help getting up at the end of the procedure.
Dental problems appear to be fairly common in captive elephants in the U.S., and can lead to death from malnutrition or infection if not corrected. Elephants usually have six sets of molar teeth during their lifetimes, which erupt from the back of the mouth, migrate forward toward the front of the mouth, and are eventually shed in segments while a new molar grows in from behind. Unfortunately, some elephants have deformed teeth that become impacted instead of shed, or curve towards the cheek or tongue. While the definitive cause of these deformities is not yet known, it is speculated that inadequate nutrition at a very young age may play a role. All of the teeth that an elephant will have in his or her lifetime are present as small buds in the upper and lower jawbones when they are babies. These immature teeth can be permanently damaged by poor nutrition during important developmental stages of life, causing deformed teeth to erupt decades later.
Maggie has three abnormal molars, with the two bottom molars most affected. Normal teeth are oval in shape, and move straight from the back to the front of the mouth, but Maggie's teeth are curved and are moving towards her tongue and cheek instead of forward. An additional complication is that her jawbone has grown firmly around the base of at least one tooth, anchoring it in its abnormal position and preventing normal movement of this tooth and the teeth behind it. Because of the severity and complexity of Maggie's dental problems, she will probably need procedures like this on an annual basis until they are corrected.
We are grateful to the Colyer Institute for bringing together some of the world's most experienced elephant professionals to help Maggie. Their team members have successfully anesthetized hundreds of elephants, and have a vast amount of experience with elephant dentistry. Some of the participants in Maggie's procedure volunteered their time and expertise, and we are also very grateful to them for their generosity.
The total cost for this procedure is approximately $70,000 and includes not only fees associated with the visiting team, but a virtual mountain of fluids, medications, diagnostic materials, and other consumable veterinary supplies.
Please make a donation to help offset the cost of Maggie's procedure and support our mission of providing excellent care to all the animals at PAWS. To make a contribution, click here. To everyone who has already donated to Maggie's dental care, we sincerely thank you!

Maggie (above left) recovered beautifully from her dental procedure
and the next morning was outside mud bathing and happily munching
on grass with her close friends Lulu and Toka.

Help PAWS Raise $25,000 In 24 Hours!
The countdown to the fourth annual BIG Day of Giving, presented by the Sacramento Region Community Foundation, has begun. Starting at midnight on May 4th, PAWS will once again be participating in this 24-hour online giving challenge, a small moment in time each year when the Sacramento, California, region takes a day to celebrate the spirit of giving.
Our goal on May 4th is to raise $25,000 in 24 hours for PAWS animals. Any individual or business, regardless of where you are located, may donate. Make your donations online (debit or credit) at Watch the video below to find out how easy it is to donate.

You don't have to wait until May 4th to give to PAWS! You can schedule your donation NOW by clicking here. Or you can join the excitement of the day and give anytime on May 4th.  If you choose to schedule your gift now, your credit card will not be charged until the day of the event.
On May 4th, PAWS will have the chance to win any of the following cash prizes: 
Hourly Donation Challenge: A $1,000 prize will be awarded every hour on May 4th to the participating nonprofit that raises the most money during that hour. A total of 24 prizes totaling $24,000 will be awarded.
Hourly Donor Challenge: A $1,000 prize will be awarded every hour on May 4th to the participating nonprofit that has the most "unique donors" during that hour. A unique donor is defined as one donation from one donor. A total of 24 prizes totaling $24,000 will be awarded.
Big Day of Giving Boosters: Make a donation with your credit card at on May 4th and your donation could get a boost! Each hour randomly selected donations will be given a boost by having additional dollars added to it! Boosts will range from $250 - $1,000, with a total of $50,000 up for grabs!
Online giving challenges like these are successful because of each individual's own network. Please pay it forward by sharing this email with friends, family and colleagues and by posting this information to your social media network. Ask your connections to do the same.

Thank you in advance for your generosity to the animals at PAWS.

BIG Day of Giving Social Media Links
Hashtags: #BDOG2017 #BigDog2017

Special Veterinary Care for Tiger Roy
Thirteen-year old tiger Roy came to PAWS as a cub with his sisters, Kim and Claire, when the roadside zoo where they were born was shut down. The young cubs were products of "puppy mill"-style breeding, to produce a steady supply of cubs to be used for photo sessions with the public, handling and petting, and other exploitative uses. Captive tigers in these situations are often encouraged to breed with their own siblings, parents or other close relatives in order to produce desired color mutations. Until they were rescued, Roy, Kim and Claire were destined to become part of this cycle of abuse, including breeding when they became mature enough. Roy's crossed eyes and crooked spine are examples of the kinds of genetic defects often associated with irresponsible breeding.

With Roy safely anesthetized, Dr. Gai examines his eyes.
In October 2016, keepers at PAWS noticed an unusual appearance on the surface of Roy's left eye, and our veterinary staff prescribed appropriate antiviral and antibiotic medications that were carefully hidden in his food. Roy seemed healthy in every other way, active, and alert with a good appetite. Keepers and veterinary staff regularly checked on his eyes, and the lesions seemed to be quiet and even looked like they were healing. In late March, however, Roy's left eye suddenly and unexpectedly became very inflamed. PAWS' veterinarians examined his eyes under anesthesia and discovered that his left cornea was severely damaged beyond repair, and that he was now blind in that eye. In order to relieve pain and prevent severe infection, the decision was made to remove his eye.

Preparing to begin surgery, left to right: Lynn Dowling, RVT, Dr. Jennifer Curtis, Dr. Jackie Gai, Kirk Stafford, RVT.
On April 7th, Roy was brought into The Pat Derby Animal Wellness Center for surgery. This recently completed facility is ARK 2000's first on-site clinic, with state-of-the-art equipment that enables us to provide the best veterinary care possible. Roy's surgery was the first major procedure to take place in the Wellness Center, which was designed to easily accommodate important procedures on large animals.  Dr. Jennifer Curtis performed Roy's enucleation surgery, assisted by Dr. Jackie Gai. PAWS' staff registered veterinary technician Lynn Dowling monitored anesthesia and provided a vital support role, assisted by longtime PAWS friend and supporter Kirk Stafford, RVT. PAWS' president, Ed Stewart, sanctuary manager, Brian Busta, and tiger staff were also instrumental in making this surgery safe and successful.
Roy recovered quickly after surgery, and almost immediately seemed more comfortable. Tissue and other samples collected during surgery will be analyzed by U.C. Davis and Cornell diagnostic laboratories in an effort to determine the underlying cause of his eye lesions. Dr. Gai has also been consulting with veterinary ophthalmologists at U.C. Davis. Our veterinarians have developed a treatment plan intended to keep Roy's remaining eye healthy. His condition is very unusual, and every effort is being made to keep him comfortable and preserve his vision. We thank Kirk Stafford for generously volunteering his time and lending his expertise to help Roy.
Your support is vital to our veterinary program and providing expert medical care to the animals at our sanctuaries. Click here to make a donation to PAWS today.

ARK 2000 sanctuary manager Brian Busta hands Asian bull elephant Nicholas an edible wreath, his "prize" for being voted this year's Mr. TUSKany.

PAWS' Elephant Grape Stomp
A Huge Success!
PAWS' popular special event, The Elephant Grape Stomp: An Afternoon in TUSKany, took place on April 15th. More than 400 guests attended the event, which is held at the ARK 2000 sanctuary in San Andreas. The afternoon raised more than $35,000 in support of PAWS' rescue and animal care programs for captive wildlife in need.
Under sunny blue skies, guests visited the elephants, bears and big cats, and learned more about their personal histories and the larger issues impacting captive wildlife, such as the unchecked breeding of tigers for cub-petting operations. Event attendees sampled sophisticated wines courtesy of many of the area's award-winning wineries, browsed PAWS' gift shop and silent auction, and dined on delicious Italian fare donated by Jeff Newland and Il Fornaio.
A popular feature of the Grape Stomp is always the Ms./Mr. TUSKany contest where "votes" for a favorite elephant can be bought for a $5 donation. This year's winner was Asian bull elephant Nicholas, who received a garland of edible treats (see photo above, click here to watch video). This is Nicholas' second win! At the end of the day, all elephants were winners, with each receiving an edible wreath.
PAWS would like to thank the following individuals and businesses who helped make this fundraiser a tremendous success:  
  • Jeff Newland and his Il Fornaio culinary crew  for donating their authentic Italian cuisine. This the 19th year they have donated to PAWS!
  • Cindy Anderson and Rachel Silva for once again tempting our guests with their delicious vegan and gluten-free baked goods. 
  • The regional wineries who so generously offered their wines for tasting: Black Sheep, Bodega Del Sur, Brice Station, Broll Mountain, Frog's Tooth, Fortezza, Irish Family Vineyards, Ironstone, Michael David, Milliaire, Moody Ridge, Renegade, Renner, Stevenot, Val Du Vino, Vina Moda, Wilderotter, and Zucca Mountain. 
  • All of our silent auction donors, including Kimberly McDonald Fine Jewelry, Kim Basinger, Lily Tomlin, Kevin Nealon, Virgin America, the estate of Christina Hill, Marguerite Smith, Linda Gibboney, Maggie Ferrari, Steve Carlson ("Slap Shot's" Steve Hanson), Dean Morris, Ed Stewart, Debbie Casey, Catherine Doyle, Big Trees Market in Arnold, Dean Morris, Courtwood Inn Murphys and Furlicious. 
  • PAWS volunteers, many of whom have been with us for more than a decade, and without whom we could not have presented this important and fun event: Janet and Tim Aamodt, Sylvia Aspire, Chris and Marcie Christensen, Linda Dodge, Darlene Duff, Baylee Fisch, Barry Gardner, Rhianna Gardner, Priscilla Chalmers, Maryanne Garamendi and the Mountain Oaks School families, Kitty Good, Galen Hazelhofer, Ruth Huffman, Jerry Jacobs, Cheryl Jensen, Lonnie Jones, Jannelle Kessler, Barbara Larkin, Diana Larson, Kim Litzberg, Bonnie Morgan, Debbie Morrow, Lorrie Morris, Sharon Niel, Jill Ogden, Mike Ogden, Steve Petty, Jane Richter, Judy Sheely, Marguerite Smith, Nancy Stehura, David and Lori Swearingen, Sarah Swift, Bob Wilhelm, Donna Wilhelm, Johnnie and Karen Wirsing, Kerry Worgan and Dale Zehrung.

Thank you to everyone who attended this year's Elephant Grape Stomp. We would also like to acknowledge and say thank you to many of our longtime supporters who took the time to share some of their heartfelt thoughts and suggestions on how we can make next year's event even better.


Los Angeles Passes Motion to Become
Largest U.S. City to Ban Use of
Wild Animals  for Entertainment!
The Los Angeles City Council voted unanimously to pass a motion by Councilmember David Ryu to ban the use of wild animals for entertainment or amusement, including in circuses, other wild animal exhibitions, and rentals for house parties. The City Attorney's office must now draft the ordinance language that will require the Council's final approval.
PAWS and The Humane Society of the United States National Council member Cheri Shankar led the charge on this effort, supported by Animal Legal Defense Fund, PETA, Born Free USA, and In Defense of Animals. We also thank sanctuaries Big Cat Rescue and Lions, Tigers and Bears, and the Oakland Zoo for their support.
The bans on cruel elephant bullhooks passed in Los Angeles and Oakland and set the stage for this important next step of protecting all performing wild animals. Not long after these passed, the Ringling Bros. Circus ended its elephant acts. Then earlier this year the circus announced it would shut down forever, citing the absence of elephants as a factor. Now, prohibitions on performing wild animals will be possible in even more major U.S. cities.

PAWS is proud of the instrumental role we played in passing these bullhook bans (and a state-wide ban in California!) - and now this important win for the animals in Los Angeles.
Since its inception in 1984, PAWS has fought to protect all performing wild animals, and we are still going strong! Thank you to Councilmember Ryu and to all the Los Angeles residents who called and emailed their councilmembers! We also thank our celebrity friends, including Lily Tomlin, Jane Wagner, Kim Basinger and Kristin Bauer van Straten, for getting the message out on social media.

Other Legislative Action
End the use of elephants in
traveling shows in Massachusetts!
S. 1898/H. 418, sponsored by Representative Lori Ehrlich and Senator O'Connor Ives, would prohibit the use of elephants in traveling shows in Massachusetts. Elephants suffer when used for circuses and rides. These highly intelligent and sensitive animals are subject to abusive training and handling, made to travel extensively in cramped trucks, and are confined to small pens that restrict the movement vital to their health and well-being. If you live in Massachusetts and have not yet contacted your legislator,  click here to learn more and take action now. PAWS is strongly supporting this bill, including appearing before a committee on May 2nd to testify in favor of this important action for captive elephants.

Amboseli Trust for Elephants Founder and Director Cynthia Moss

"Celebrating Elephants 2017"
A Benefit for Amboseli Trust for Elephants
The Oakland Zoo will present its 21st annual "Celebrating Elephants" gala on May 20. The evening event is a benefit for Amboseli Trust for Elephants (ATE), and this year features guest presenter Christine Browne-Nunez, Ph.D. (Wildlife Ecology & Conservation/Human Dimensions), who will talk about her work with ATE. Her research in Kenya has included the  human aspects of elephant conservation around Amboseli National Park.  

Most of what we know about African elephants today can be credited to the work of Dr. Cynthia Moss, founder of ATE, and her Amboseli Elephant Research Project (AERP) team who have been investigating the lives of elephants at the Amboseli National Park for more than 45 years - the longest running study of a land mammal.

The "Celebrating Elephants" gala includes food, beverages, an exciting silent auction, and a chance for elephant lovers to gather together and celebrate these iconic animals while contributing to their conservation. Doors open at 6 p.m. Click here for more information and to purchase tickets. 
This special evening event will be followed by a fun-filled, daytime family event at the Oakland Zoo on May 27. 

Book Review:
"Elephants Among Us: Two Performing
Elephants in 20th Century America"
All too often the sad lives and deaths of captive elephants go unrecorded or they are lost with time. In "Elephants Among Us: Two Performing Elephants in 20th Century America", with the foreword written by PAWS President Ed Stewart, author Mike Jaynes sets out to preserve the memories of elephants Stoney and Mary. Though they lived decades apart, their stories are united by their exploitation for "entertainment" and their tragic ends.
The greater part of "Elephants Among Us" chronicles the plight of Stoney, a male Asian elephant who was crippled when his rear leg hamstring snapped while practicing a hind leg stand for a Las Vegas show. In excruciating pain and unable to stand, he was relegated to a windowless building. That's when fearless animal activist Linda Faso joined forces with PAWS co-founder, the late Pat Derby, to fight for Stoney.
Jaynes effectively uses first-hand accounts of events, both for Stoney and the elephant Mary, whose much older story is told in the latter part of the book. While the subject matter may be difficult, Jaynes' meticulous research and interesting perspectives keep you engaged. After reading this book you will never forget these elephants - and that's how it should be
Click here to order your copy of "Elephants Among Us."

Good News for Animals
Guatemala now bans the use of wild animals in circuses . The law also prohibits foreign traveling shows from coming into the country with wild animals. The Guatemala law follows that of Mexico, which banned the use of animals in circuses in 2015. Circuses have one year to surrender animals to sanctuaries or wildlife rehabilitation centers in or outside the country.
The Kansas City Renaissance Festival will no longer offer elephant rides. The Festival made the decision after patrons and concerned local citizens expressed concern via phone calls, emails and Facebook.

April Amazon Wish List Donors 
Kristen Linoski: two sets of walkie-talkies/radios. Bill Mentus: one bottle of CosequinDS, 132#, one 5 lb. tub of Psyllium. Patricia Connelly: one package of Purell hand soap/sanitizer, one package of AA batteries, 24#. Sue Begna l: one 5 lb. bag of Missing Link Ultimate Skin & Coat. Nancy Gordon: two sets of walkie-talkie/radios. Karen (no last name listed): one set of walkie-talkie/radios, one box of 13 gal. trash bags, one bottle of Renal Essentials, 60#. Jennifer Crum: one box of 33 gal. trash bags, one box of 13 gal. trash bags. Barbara Greene: one box of 42 gal. trash bags, one bag of Greenies Pill Pockets. Marisa Landsberg: two sets of walkie-talkie/radios. Kemper Conwell: one 20 lb. tub of Psyllium. Kim Behrens: three 40 lb. boxes of oranges. Kurt Buckheim: one bottle of Renal Essentials, 60#, one 40 lb. box of oranges. Dr. Meggi Raeder: two sets of walkie-talkies/radios. Cathleen DeOrnelas: one set of walkie-talkies/radios, four bags of Greenies Pill Pockets, two bottles of Duralactin, , two bottles of Renal Essentials, 60#, one bottle of CosequinDS, 132#. Carol Roscelli: one box of 33 gal. trash bags, one box of 13 gal. trash bags, one 10 lb. tub of Psyllium, one bottle of CosequinDS, 132#. Anonymous Donors: one gallon of Red Cell, two Probiocin.
View wish list items that are needed,
but not listed on the Amazon list, here.

There are many ways you can help PAWS animals:
Adopt A PAWS Animal
If you would like to help our animals, one of the best ways is to become an "adoptive parent," or give a PAWS adoption as a gift to an animal lover in your life. PAWS adoptions are symbolic adoptions only. No animal will be sent!
PAWS Amazon Wish List

EBAY Giving Works
List items on EBAY and choose PAWS as your charity. Donate a percentage of each sale to the animals. Visit our EBAY charity listing page here. Start selling!

Corporate Donations
and Matching Fund Programs
Learn more about what is needed.

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Help us change the life of a victim of captivity by becoming a PAWS Partner.  PAWS partnerships help support our sanctuary operations and the day-to-day care of the animals.

Shop through IGIVE and raise money for PAWS!
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Purchase PAWS apparel and merchandise.

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Donate To PAWS
PAWS receives no government funding and must rely on your donations to continue our work. Three ways to give and every donation matters.  Learn more

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and makes great gifts for any occasion !
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"Seeing the Elephant" Weekend Getaways | PAWS Animal Adoptions
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