PAWS' Top Successes for the Animals

2016 was a good year for captive wild animals, with major legislative victories and a continuing trend toward the rejecting of the use of wild animals in entertainment. PAWS is looking forward to the challenges that the New Year will bring, including rescuing more animals in need and giving them a new, more natural life at our ARK 2000 sanctuary. We will also be working toward more legislative victories that bring us closer to ending the exploitation of exotic animals in circuses, roadside zoos and as exotic "pets" (see "Sneak Peek at 2017" below).  Thanks to you, PAWS is here for wild and exotic animals in need. I look forward to partnering with you to achieve even more great things for the animals in 2017!
Best holiday wishes for the New Year from the PAWS family!
Ed Stewart
President and Co-founder

2016: Great Progress
for Captive Wildlife Continues with Outstanding Victories in Advocacy

Since its inception in 1984, PAWS has fought to end the use of cruel bullhooks on elephants. The bullhook is a weapon resembling a fireplace poker, with a sharpened steel tip and hook at the end. It has only one use: to control elephants through fear and pain. Without the bullhook, handlers claim they cannot use elephants in circuses, for rides, or other types of "entertainment." We are very happy to report that 2016 was the landmark year we have waited so long and worked so hard for, with not one but two statewide bullhook bans!
Rhode Island Prohibits
Use of the Bullhook
Rhode Island became the first state in the nation to ban the use of bullhooks on elephants in traveling shows and circuses, after Governor Gina Raimondo signed the prohibition into law in July. PAWS provided expert testimony, met with legislators and provided other support over the last few years. Our celebrity friends also lent their support, including Bob Barker, Kim Basinger, Kristin Bauer van Straten, Ross McCall and Kevin Nealon.
California Bans the Bullhook
In August, California Governor Jerry Brown signed into law SB 1062, introduced by Senator Ricardo Lara, to end the use of bullhooks in the state. PAWS proudly co-sponsored the bill together with The Humane Society of the United States and the Oakland Zoo. We played a key role in passing the bullhook bans in Los Angeles and Oakland, Calif., that preceded the state bill, and have been active in the passage of ordinances in other major U.S. cities.
Milestone Moment: No More Public Elephant Rides in California
Six Flags Discovery Kingdom in Vallejo, California, the last public venue to offer elephant rides in California, has decided to end the attraction. The decision came after the California ban on bullhooks, co-sponsored by PAWS, was signed into law (effective 2018) and amid pressure from local activists. PAWS has successfully campaigned to end elephant rides in California, including at county fairs around the state.

Key Events in
Animal Rescue and Care
A Very Special Bear
Arrives at PAWS
In August we welcomed a new sanctuary resident: Mack, a young black bear who lost part of his right rear leg to a trapper's snare. Normally, wild bear cubs remain with their mothers until about two years of age. But at only a few months old, Mack was pathetically begging for food from people, and was eventually taken in by authorities. Mack now lives in a specially adapted enclosure where this energetic young bear can climb, dig, forage or curl up in his cozy den.
A New Home for Tigers
Roy, Kim and Claire
March was the month when tigers Roy, Kim and Claire were relocated from our Galt facility to the 2,300 acre ARK 2000 sanctuary, where they are enjoying a larger habitat filled with trees, green grass and a pool to splash in (thanks to some special donors). The siblings were just four months old when they arrived at PAWS in 2003, after being rescued from a roadside zoo that constantly bred cubs for handling and photos.
Dental Work
for Elephant Maggie
African elephant Maggie underwent a dental procedure in April - a mammoth effort led by PAWS' veterinarian Dr. Jackie Gai. The procedure required a team of more than 25 experienced elephant care experts from across the U.S., who worked under the direction of the non-profit Colyer Institute which specializes in the treatment of dental disease in elephants and other wild animals. Dental disease is common in captive elephants and can have serious consequences if left untreated. Maggie continues to do well but will require additional dental work. The cost to PAWS so far: about $70,000. 

Major Accomplishments and Successes
PAWS Goes Solar!
As of July, the ARK 2000 sanctuary in San Andreas is now powered by solar energy. Clean, renewable energy supplies 97% of the electricity to our elephant barns, big cat and bear facilities, offices, and soon to be opened Pat Derby Animal Wellness Center. Not only are we helping the environment and encouraging clean air and water, we will save nearly $1.5 million in electricity costs over 25 years.
PAWS' 2016
International Captive Wildlife Conference a Huge Success
More than 200 people from around the world attended the PAWS 2016 International Captive Wildlife Conference in November. During the two-day event attendees heard from 26 speakers and expert panelists who addressed issues concerning bears, big cats, elephants, and "next wave" sanctuaries for captive wildlife. PAWS seeks to enlighten and educate people through its biennial conferences. Save the date for our next conference in Los Angeles in November 2018!

Moments Worth Sharing
PAWS President Ed Stewart was a guest speaker at the Marin Humane Society's Annual Gala celebration in March . PAWS has a special, long-time relationship with The Marin Humane Society and was pleased to celebrate the wonderful and caring work they do.
Veterinary students from the University of California, Davis, toured the ARK 2000 sanctuary in April . During this annual visit, PAWS' veterinarian Dr. Jackie Gai and Sanctuary Manager Brian Busta shared information and demonstrated husbandry care and veterinary examinations for students who may go on to work with wild animals, either free-ranging or captive. Inspiring and educating students is an important part of PAWS outreach efforts.

Ed Stewart and Dr. Cynthia Moss visit with African elephant Thika at ARK 2000.

World-renowned scientist Dr. Cynthia Moss visited ARK 2000 in May . Since 1972, Dr. Moss has lived with and studied the elephants of Kenya's Amboseli National Park. Her pioneering work has revealed most of what we know today about elephant behavior and social structure. PAWS is proud of its enduring relationship with Dr. Moss, who has visited ARK 2000 many times and supports our work for the elephants.
In May PAWS presented California Assemblymember Frank Bigelow with a special certificate of appreciation recognizing his support for the welfare of captive wildlife. The Assemblymember supported the bullhook ban and other important legislation for animals. He represents District 5 where ARK 2000 is situated.

Manny Oteyza, Kristin Bauer van Straten and Ed Stewart at the Los Angeles premiere of the documentary "Gods In Shackles."
PAWS attended the Los Angeles premiere of the documentary Gods In Shackles in June.
This important film exposes the widespread and profound suffering of elephants used in cultural festivals in the southern Indian state of Kerala. Joining PAWS President Ed Stewart were actress Kristin Bauer van Straten, star of HBO's True Blood and the TV series Once Upon A Time, fine jewelry designer Kimberly McDonald, Blackfish producer Manny Oteyza, and Kat Kramer, daughter of Academy Award-winning director Stanley Kramer.
In September PAWS again joined the March for Elephants and Rhinos in San Francisco. Hundreds of marchers participated in this year's event, which was specially timed to coincide with the start of the CITES (Convention on the Trade in Endangered Species) Conference of Parties in South Africa, where important decisions about the trade in elephant ivory and rhinoceros horn were being made. PAWS Director of Science, Research and Advocacy Catherine Doyle addressed participants at a post-march rally.

Sneak Peek at 2017
2016 has been an incredibly productive year for PAWS - one that saw some of our years-long work for captive wild animals come to fruition. But, as always, there is so much more to be done in order to make a better world for captive big cats, elephants, bears, nonhuman primates and any wild animal forced to perform in a circus, give rides, suffer in a cramped cage on display, or be kept as someone's exotic "pet."
We look forward to 2017, and PAWS is ready to face the challenges the New Year will bring. We have never wavered in our commitment to protecting, rescuing and caring for captive wildlife. We will continue to stand strong in the face of those who exploit animals for their own profit, and we will continue to provide safe sanctuary for animals in need.
Here is a sneak peek at 2017 and some of the projects PAWS is involved in:
PAWS Embarks On Tiger Rescue
PAWS is busy with preparations for our next rescue: eight tigers in desperate need. The cats range in age from four to 15 years old and are coming from a facility in Colorado that had been breeding tigers just so the public could handle the cubs and have a picture taken with them. All but eight tigers had been relocated to other sanctuaries. PAWS stepped up and agreed to take the last eight, allowing the facility to be closed for good.
Facilities that offer public contact and photos with cubs are engaged in a never-ending cycle of cruelty. Big cats are constantly bred to produce cubs who, in turn, are disposed of when they get older, more dangerous to handle, and unprofitable. Some cats may be kept for even more breeding. Sadly, this is big business despite the unimaginable suffering it causes the animals. PAWS is working closely on the rescue with Tigers in America, an organization that seeks to end big cat breeding and exploitation and help tigers in need.
PAWS will keep you updated on this rescue and the arrival of the tigers at the ARK 2000 sanctuary. Please watch our Facebook page, follow us on Twitter, and look for more information in upcoming PAWS e-newsletters. You will also be hearing more about our efforts to stop the rampant breeding of big cats and end the exploitation of these animals in cub petting operations.
Protecting Performing Wild Animals Through Legislation
You will definitely want to follow PAWS as we work on newly proposed ordinances to ban the use of performing wild animals in two major U.S. cities: New York and Los Angeles. If passed, these would be milestone ordinances. If you live in either city, we will be providing information on how you can help. Stay tuned for more on these important bills and other new bills as they arise.
Pat Derby Animal  Wellness Center to Open
The Pat Derby Animal Wellness Center, named in honor of the late PAWS co-founder, will be opening next month. This comprehensive veterinary facility will better serve the animals we care for at our ARK 2000 sanctuary by enhancing the types of  v eterinary care we can provide on-site. This means less stress for the animals, who can be hospitalized and provided specialized treatment and care without leaving the sanctuary.
Milestone Anniversary: Maggie's 10 Years at PAWS!
In November 2017 we will be marking the 10-year anniversary of African elephant Maggie's arrival at PAWS. This remarkable elephant came to the ARK 2000 sanctuary from the Alaska Zoo, and is an important member of our elephant group. Save the date and be sure to join us in celebrating this very special event!

Only a Few More Days Left for
2016 Tax-deductible Giving
There is still time to make a year-end, tax-deductible donation to PAWS. Make your contribution  online , or call our office at 209-745-2606 (M-F, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. PST) and have your credit card ready. You can also make a gift of a stock donation to PAWS by December 31. Please contact Kim Gardner at  or call 916-539-5305 for more information.
Your tax-deductible holiday gift of $5, $15, $50, $500, or even $5,000 provides expert daily care, necessary veterinary treatments, and food for the elephants, tigers, lions, bears, monkeys, lynx, and other animals who have found safe refuge at PAWS. Every gift matters!
It's easy (and quick!) to make a year-end gift to PAWS.
PAWS is proud of its 4-star rating with  Charity Navigator  - the highest rating possible. We are part of an elite group of charities with an "exceptional" designation (at least 4 consecutive years of 4-star ratings), meaning that your gift will have the greatest impact possible.
PAWS is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. PAWS Fed ID# 94-3005157.

Time For Thanks

It is with heartfelt appreciation that we thank: 
  • You, our supporters, who truly change the lives of captive wild animals in need and make our work possible.
  • PAWS' dedicated staff who put their hearts and souls into the care of every animal.
  • Our committed volunteers, who so selflessly give of their time and talents to help further our cause.
  • The generous companies and individuals who provide in-kind services that help our animals.
  • Everyone who has supported PAWS and the care of our animals by making a donation, becoming a PAWS Partner, donating needed items via the Amazon Wish List, "adopting" an animal, and giving in other ways. 
We wish you all the very best for the coming New Year!

December Amazon Wish List Donors

Karen M. Osgood: one bottle CosequinDS, 250#. Keith Wenk: one box of 40# oranges. Gini and Tim Wozny: one 5 lb. bag of Missing Link Ultimate Skin & Coat, one Probiocin Gel, one bottle Renal Essentials 60#, one qt. Red Cell. Sharal Camisa: one 5 lb. tub Psyllium, one bottle CosequinDS 132#, one Probiocin Gel. Helen LaBarbera: one bottle CosequinDS 132#. Cecilia Littlepage: one box 9x12 clasp envelopes, one box 33 gallon trash bags, one box of 40# oranges. Kathy Knight: four bags of Greenies Pill Pockets. Linda Bollinger: one 5 lb. bag Missing Link Ultimate Skin & Coat, three bags of Blue Buffalo, one bottle Duralactin, 180#, one Probiocin Gel. Marc Rockford: one bottle Duralactin 180#, one 10 lb. bag of Missing Link Ultimate Equine Skin & Coat. Britannia: one 5 lb. bag of Missing Link Ultimate Skin & Coat. Suzie in Seattle: one 10 lb. bag of Missing Link Ultimate Skin & Coat, one 5 lb. tub of Psyllium. Kelly Martin: one 5 lb. bag of Missing Link Ultimate Skin & Coat. Jill D. Coher: one bottle Azodyl. Anonymous Donors: one 5 lb. tub of Psyllium, one scoop shovel, one qt. Red Cell, four gallons Red Cell.
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.

Donate Your Vehicle

PAWS Partnerships
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!
Up to 26% of your purchase - at more than 1,600 retailers - can be donated to PAWS.
PAWS is rated
a 4-Star Charity 
Purchase PAWS apparel and merchandise.

Clothing for adults, kids, toddlers and infants, as well as other fun merchandise like coffee mugs - available from our online gift shop .

Estates/Planned Giving
You can help us make sure captive wildlife in need of shelter will always have a PAWS sanctuary to call home!
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

PAWS merchandise is fun, educational,
and makes great gifts for any occasion !
PAWS' Note Cards
Bears, Tigers, Elephants
Dozens of different designs are now available in our gift shop.
$24.99 for a set of 10 + tax + worldwide shipping

More items, more designs, more fun - all to benefit the animals at PAWS!
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"Seeing the Elephant" Weekend Getaways | PAWS Animal Adoptions
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PO Box 849
Galt, CA 95632
(209) 745-2606