Rescue. Advocacy. Sanctuary. For Life.
Since 1984

April 2019 | Newsletter
Pictured: African elephant Toka

It had to begin with elephants. . .
PAWS: 35 Years of
Elephant Advocacy and Care
As we look back over the last 35 years, there’s no arguing that elephants have always been a big part of PAWS’ work for captive wildlife. We have cared for 19 elephants throughout the years and advocated on behalf of many, many more. As the late Pat Derby, PAWS’ co-founder together with Ed Stewart, once wrote, “It had to begin with elephants. . .”
In 1986, PAWS established itself as the first elephant sanctuary in the United States with the rescue of a sickly female calf named “71” who was captured in Zimbabwe after her mother and family members were slaughtered in a cull. She was part of a large group of elephant calves imported to the U.S. in the 1980s by a fitness equipment magnate who kept the calves on his sprawling Florida property – and later sold them off to zoos and circuses. 71 was very ill, extremely underweight, and, without Pat and Ed’s intervention, most likely would have died. Sadly, 71 succumbed to pancreatitis in 2009, a condition linked to her early health problems and lack of proper nutrition.
Mara (pictured right with 71, circa 1992 ) was the next elephant to find sanctuary at PAWS in 1990, saved from being sold to a circus. She was followed by Tammy and Annie, two aging Asian elephants from the Milwaukee Zoo. PAWS had exposed a gruesome training video made by the zoo for which Tammy and Annie were tied down with ropes and chains and cruelly beaten – repeatedly struck by keepers using heavy bullhooks and baseball bats. The ensuing controversy led to their transfer to PAWS in 1995.
Many more elephants found sanctuary at PAWS, each with their own story to tell (far too many to impart in this article!), such as Asian elephant Gypsy who spent nearly 40 years in the circus and African elephant Maggie, who was the only elephant in Alaska – both arrived in 2007. Our first bull elephant, Nicholas (left), also came to PAWS in 2007. PAWS remains the only sanctuary to care for bull elephants.
Advocacy efforts on behalf of elephants run throughout PAWS’ history – and continue today. In 1985 PAWS was the first organization in the country to investigate and obtain undercover video of circus animal abuse. In 1988, Pat Derby served on the Elephant Task Force, a committee formed by a California state senator in response to the horrific beating of African elephant Dunda at the San Diego Wild Animal Park. This resulted in passage of an elephant protection law that prohibited certain abusive practices.
Over the years, PAWS has launched nationwide campaigns aimed at ending the use of elephants in traveling shows and circuses, investigated elephant abuse, and presented testimony at special hearings in Washington, DC. We’ve been fortunate to work alongside longtime friends such as Emmy Award-winning television star Bob Barker and Academy Award-winning actress Kim Basinger.
Always focused on our aim of ending the abuse of elephants, no matter where they may be confined or made to perform, PAWS set its sights on ending the use of elephant bullhooks. We helped drive the Los Angeles ban on bullhooks, signed into law in 2014, followed by a ban in Oakland, California – the first major U.S. cities to enact restrictions on major circuses. These actions set the stage for the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus to end its elephant acts in 2016 and then shut down forever in 2017.
Above: In 2015, PAWS' President Ed Stewart was a featured speaker at a rally held on the steps of California's State Capitol. Joining PAWS was "CSI" television star Jorja Fox and Gina Kinzley, lead elephant keeper at the Oakland Zoo. The day was all about elephants and two elephant protection bills before the legislature.
PAWS co-sponsored the successful statewide prohibition on elephant bullhooks in California and teamed up to prohibit bullhooks in Rhode Island. We’ve actively contributed to other groundbreaking legislation, including prohibitions on the use of elephants in circuses in Illinois and New York State, a ban on wild animals in circuses in New York City, and the recent bans on wild animal acts in New Jersey and Hawaii.
With an eye to the future, PAWS has provided expert affidavits for groundbreaking legal cases by the Nonhuman Rights Project that aim for recognition of legal personhood for captive elephants.
PAWS is dedicated to doing everything we can for captive elephants: We provide hope for a better life by providing lifelong care, spacious environments, and a more natural life at our 2,300-acre ARK 2000 sanctuary, opened in 2002. We also hold out hope for a better future by fighting to end elephant abuse, exploitation, breeding, and, ultimately, their captivity. At the same time, we work to impress upon everyone the urgency of protecting elephants and their habitats in Asia and Africa.

Thank you for joining us on this very worthy journey!

* * *
Elephants who have found refuge at PAWS:  
  • Elephants we currently care for at ARK 2000: Mara, Lulu, Maggie, Thika, Toka, Gypsy, Nicholas and Prince. 
  • Elephants who forever remain in our hearts: 71, Tammy, Annie, Minnie, Rebecca, Tinkerbelle, Wanda, Winkie, Ruby, Sabu and Iringa.
Big Day of Giving
Is Right Around the Corner!
$30,000 in Matching Funds
Don’t forget that May 2 nd is the Big Day of Giving – a time to open your heart and give generously to support PAWS’ lifesaving work for captive wildlife. This 24-hour online giving challenge starts at midnight on May 2nd, but you can make your donation now !
Our goal is to raise $50,000 (or more!) in 24 hours for the care of the elephants, tigers, bears, monkeys, and other wild animals at PAWS’ three sanctuaries. 
Make your online donation on May 2nd   at . (Minimum gift is $15; MasterCard, Visa, Discover and American Express credit and debit cards accepted.)
Or   schedule your contribution NOW by clicking  here .  On the morning of May 2, all scheduled donations will be added to the leaderboard on the Big Day of Giving website. (Your credit card  will not be charged until the day of the event.)
Encourage friends, family and colleagues to donate. Use social media to urge your friends to support PAWS – and ask others to share widely!
Click on the button below to give. Thank you!
Double Your Donation!
Thanks to matching gifts from
The Harriet E. Pfleger Foundation ($20,000),
The Lapides Foundation ($5,000), and
Mabel and Jeff Bialik ($5,000),
your Big Day of Giving online gift
will be matched up to $30,000!

Join PAWS for A Special
35 th Anniversary Luncheon and Tea
PAWS invites you to a 35 th anniversary luncheon and tea at the Linde Lane Tea Room in Dixon, California (about a 30-minute drive from downtown Sacramento), on June 9 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. The event is a benefit for the Pat Derby Animal Wellness Center at PAWS’ ARK 2000 sanctuary, a state-of-the-art veterinary clinic that serves the wild animals we care for at PAWS.
Hosted by Sacramento County Supervisor Don Nottoli and PAWS friend and Linde Lane Tea Room proprietor Dr. Kristina Wiley, DDS, the event will feature a delectable multi-course, plant-based luncheon by Pivotal Foods , a sparkling wine toast courtesy of Woodbridge , dessert, games, goodies, and a prize for the most creative animal-themed hat or tiara. PAWS President Ed Stewart will be on hand to share stories about PAWS’ history.
Tickets are on sale now for $135 per person. To buy tickets online, click here . For more information or to charge your tickets by phone, call 209-745-2606, Monday-Friday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. PST.
PAWS' 35 Years of
Rescue, Sanctuary and Advocacy
In recognition of PAWS’ anniversary, we will be sharing some of the highlights, achievements, and memorable moments from the last 35 years. This month we focus on the mid- to late-1990s, which included important advocacy actions and a trip to India to help wild elephants.
PAWS’ Highlights and Memorable Moments:
  • 1997: After Asian elephant Heather was killed by heatstroke in an abandoned trailer belonging to the King Royal Circus – that also contained 8 llamas and 2 other elephants – PAWS held demonstrations around the country to publicize the atrocity. The USDA confiscated the circus’ remaining animals, revoked its license, and levied a record-setting $200,000 fine.
  • 1997: PAWS launched the “Free the Elephants” campaign, with Academy Award-winning actress Kim Basinger (pictured right with Pat Derby) as its spokesperson. She and Pat Derby delivered to the U.S. Secretary of Agriculture a petition with 400,000 signatures calling for an end to the use of elephants in traveling shows.

  • 1997: PAWS opened the Amanda Blake Memorial Wildlife Refuge, a sanctuary for exotic hoof stock, in memory of Pat Derby and Ed Stewart's long-time friend and the actress best known for her television role as “Miss Kitty” on Gunsmoke.

  • 1999: PAWS’ “Captive Elephant Accident Prevention Act”, HR 2929, was introduced in Congress by Representative Sam Farr (D-CA). Pat Derby, Bob Barker and others testified at a special hearing in Washington, D.C.
  • 1999: PAWS President Ed Stewart, working with Rotary International, traveled to India and installed solar electric fencing (above) to help mitigate human-elephant conflict. PAWS investigated and exposed the cruel capture and training of wild elephants for captivity.
Update on California
Circus Cruelty Prevention Act
The Circus Cruelty Prevention Act ( SB 313 ) , introduced by California State Senator Ben Hueso, is making great progress. This will would ban the use of animals in circuses, except for dogs, cats and horses. The bill passed out of its first hearing with the Senate Committee on Natural Resources and Water, with a 7-0 vote. It then passed the Senate Judiciary Committee, also on a 7-0 vote. The next step is a vote in the Senate Appropriations Committee.
Stay tuned for more information on SB 313 and ways that you can help! 

Other Legislative Action
PAWS is actively supporting legislation across the U.S. to help captive wildlife at the state and federal levels, including bills aimed at ending the private ownership of wild animals. This includes the Big Cat Public Safety Act, HR 1380, to ensure that unqualified individuals are prohibited from obtaining and keeping dangerous big cats and to prohibit the use of cubs for the public to feed, pet, or take photos with. Currently, state laws regarding the private ownership of big cats are inconsistent or nonexistent, making a federal law necessary. Click here to see if your Congressperson is a sponsor. If not, please contact your Congressperson and ask that they support the Big Cat Public Safety Act! Click here to find your representative.

PAWS Hosts American River College Students for Special Captive Wildlife Program
In March, students from American River College (above) in Sacramento, California, participated in PAWS’ innovative outreach program for college students, Wild Animals in Captivity: Exploring the Interface Between Humans and Wildlife . This program invites professors to bring their classes to ARK 2000 to learn about the natural biology and behavior of tigers, black bears and elephants, and issues surrounding their captivity. Students explore how captive situations affect their perception of wild animals and nature itself.
For information on Wild Animals in Captivity: Exploring the Interface Between Humans and Wildlife, please contact PAWS Director of Science, Research and Advocacy Catherine Doyle at .

Pictured: Rescued tiger Claire
Tickets For PAWS' May 11th
ARK 2000 Open House Are Now on Sale
Tickets are currently on sale for our upcoming ARK 2000 Open House to be held on Saturday, May 11th, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Admission is $50 for adults, $35 for seniors (65 and over) and $35 for children age 12 and under. If you're planning to attend, we advise you to purchase your tickets early. No tickets will be sold at the gate on the day of the event and these events do sell out. (Our next open house will be held on Saturday, December 14.)
Visitors to ARK 2000 open houses will board shuttles to the bear, lion, tiger, leopard and elephant habitats. Once you exit the shuttle you will be walking on grass, dirt, gravel, and sometimes paved surfaces, so please wear comfortable shoes. PAWS management, keepers and volunteers will be on hand to tell you about the animals and answer questions. A gift shop will be available on the day of the event. We accept cash, checks and all major credit cards.
This event happens rain or shine. Tickets are not refundable.
Two ways to purchase:  Click here  to buy online and print your tickets at home; or call 209-745-2606, Monday-Friday, 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. PST, to charge by phone. Visit our calendar of events page for more information.  Ticket sales close on Thursday, May 9th, or earlier if this event sells out. PAWS' next open house will be held on Saturday, December 14th.
Thank You April
Amazon Wish List Donors
Megan Rindt: two qt. bottles of Red Cell. Patricia Connelly: one 12.5 lb. bag of popcorn. Nancy Gordon: one book, Exotic Animal Formulary , 5th Edition; one 10x10 Pop-Up Tent; four Probiocin; one 10 lb. tub of Psyllium; two pkgs. AA batteries, 100#; two pkgs. AAA batteries, 60#. Carol Bognar: one bottle of Renal Essentials, 60#; one 8 oz. bottle of EicosaDerm. Lisa Klotz: one qt. Red Cell; one 8 oz. bottle of EicosaDerm. Cristen Esquibel: one qt. Red Cell; one gal. Red Cell. Anonymous Donors: one bottle Renal Essentials, 60#; one 8 oz. bottle of EicosaDerm; three brass shut-off hose valves; one 5 lb. tub of Psyllium; four 5 lb. bags of Missing Link Ultimate Skin and Coat.

Click on the Amazon Wish List link below to donate
specific items that are needed at our sanctuaries:
View "wish list" items that are needed,
but not listed on the Amazon list,  here .
There are many ways
you can help PAWS animals:
Donate To PAWS. Although we work closely with regulatory agencies on animal rescues, 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

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! Learn more

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. Learn more

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

Give to one of PAWS' ongoing MightyCause fundraisers: the "Dollars for Dirt" or "Give BIG" campaigns for PAWS' elephants, or our "Support a Rescued Tiger" campaign to benefit the 14 rescued tigers living at our ARK 2000 sanctuary.
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 .

Shop online through IGive and raise money for PAWS! Up to 26% of your purchase - at more than 1,600 retailers - can be donated to PAWS. Learn more

PAWS Amazon Wish List. View here , and shop using  AmazonSmile .

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 To PAWS.

Attend A Fundraiser. PAWS sanctuaries ARE NOT OPEN TO THE PUBLIC but we do schedule a limited number of special events throughout the year. Click here to view PAWS' Calendar of Events.
PAWS provides lifetime care to the big cats, bears, elephants, and other animals who call our sanctuaries home. Your kind support provides expert daily care, necessary veterinary treatments, and specialized nutritional support, all tailored to the individual needs of each animal.
Your generous donations make this excellent care possible.
Connect with us:
P. O. Box 849, Galt, CA 95632 | (209) 745-2606