Rescue. Advocacy. Sanctuary. For Life.
Since 1984

November 2018 | Newsletter
PAWS 2018 International Captive Wildlife Conference an Outstanding Success!
The PAWS 2018 International Captive Wildlife Conference was truly an incredible gathering of experts and advocates. For three days, November 9-11, nearly 50 professionals working in more than a dozen countries worldwide on behalf of captive wild animals came together in Burbank, California, to discuss their efforts involving circuses, zoos, marine parks, tourism, science, law, sanctuaries, education, conservation and more. They came from as far away as Zimbabwe, Serbia, Australia, Brazil and Thailand – and each speaker was as riveting as the next one. More than 200 people attended the event, representing 23 states in the U.S. and 10 different countries.
This conference had a very different feel to it – one of great camaraderie, warmth, support, unity and hope for the future. All of us felt it, from attendees to the many organizations present in the room. The conference brought together so many amazing people, and we know that this can only help further our collective work for captive wild animals. Attendees and speakers alike left the conference informed, inspired and invigorated.

Conference Review
Day One of the conference began with a review of the many great strides that have been made for captive wildlife since our last Southern California conference held in 2014, including legislative successes such as bans on the use of elephants in traveling shows in New York State and Illinois; the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus shutting down in 2017 and the global winding-down of circuses featuring wild animal acts; travel agencies rejecting excursions that offer elephant rides and other wild animal “entertainment”; and other notable milestones. PAWS President and Co-Founder Ed Stewart (above left) warmly welcomed attendees and reminded everyone of the important work of PAWS co-founder, the late Pat Derby, with whom he paved the way for so many of the achievements for captive wild animals today.
Opening speaker David Hancocks – author, zoo architect and former zoo director – set a high bar for the conference with his talk titled "Shocks, Surprises and Stupefaction: My Journey Through the Zoo World." He was followed by a stellar panel on the topic of Confronting Captivity that featured academics and artists. The remainder of the day was devoted to captive elephants, from those used in tourism, circuses and zoos, to those rescued and cared for in sanctuaries around the world and returned to a more natural life. Research scientist Caitlin O’Connell-Rodwell provided a fascinating presentation on the sociality of bull elephants, based on her work in Namibia.
Ed Stewart kicked off Day Two of the conference with a presentation titled "Sanctuaries: More Than Just a Place to Live." The morning session highlighted legislative and legal efforts to effect change for captive wildlife, with an update on the Nonhuman Rights Project’s groundbreaking lawsuits for captive chimps and elephants, an international panel of animal law and policy experts, and an exciting presentation about the innovative ZOOXXI campaign for the reconversion of zoos by Barcelona, Spain-based Claudia Roca Martinez and Rosi Carro Sevilla. Rounding out the day were panels on captive marine mammals, elephants in Japanese zoos, a gripping investigative report on the corrupt Tiger Temple in Thailand, and a thought-provoking scientific panel that raised questions about the role of science in confronting the problems of captivity.
Day Three concentrated on campaigns for captive wild animals, from elephants to polar bears, by organizations of all sizes. A panel on bears illuminated the enormous problems these animals face in dilapidated roadside zoos and traveling acts, and included a tough look at dancing bears in Serbia by Ivan Kurajov (pictured right with Catherine Doyle, PAWS' director of science, research and advocacy). The multi-faceted panel on big cats featured the neuroscience of feline motor skills, campaigns against canned lion hunts in South Africa, and the fight for big cat legislation in the U.S. Closing the conference was a panel on education and technology that included an interesting look at how virtual reality technology can support positive change for both captive and wild animals.
The next PAWS International Captive Wildlife Conference will take place in November 2020. It will be a two-day event in San Andreas, California, adjacent to the ARK 2000 sanctuary, and will include a sanctuary visit.
We would like to thank everyone who helped make this year's conference a huge success:
The incredible speakers and moderators who were such an inspiration and educated those new to captive wildlife issues.
David Reuben , who sponsored the Friday night ice breaker event.
Conference sponsors: The Elephant Sanctuary in Tennessee and The Humane Society of the United States (lunch sponsors), Animal Legal Defense Fund (break sponsor), and Alyne Fortgang, In Defense of Animals, PETA, Pivotal Foods and Tigers in America.
Above: During the Friday night ice breaker, conference speaker and artist Colleen Plumb presented her video project "30 Times A Minute", which was projected onto the conference building. Colleen's work explores the contradictory relationships people have with animals. Thank you Colleen!
Special friends who donated the proceeds from sales in their respective gift shops during the conference: Dr. Kristina Wiley, PAWS' "Gift Shop Glamour"; Thyra Rutter, Arte for Elephants; Jamie Heraver, author of An Elephant’s Story and founder of End Animal Slavery Store.
Generous contributors to the silent auction (right) that benefitted the animals we care for at PAWS.
PAWS' amazing and dedicated volunteers who so generously gave their time to ensure the smooth operation of the conference, ice breaker and silent auction: Rhianna Castro, Priscilla Chalmers, Ericka Deciutiis, Nick Frederick, Kelly Napoli-Floto, Barry Gardner, Christine Gardner, Kitty Good, Ruth Huffman, Mimi Kaylor, Larry Langham, Stacey Lyons, Lorrie Morris, Danielle Simmons, Jami Tolpin, Dr. Kristina Wiley and Kerry Worgan. We couldn’t have done it without you!
Nicole Zektser-Cruz for taking on the important job of timekeeping for the conference.
Above: The gardens at the Pickwick Conference Center in Burbank provided a beautiful setting for lunch on Saturday and Sunday. Special thanks to master vegan chef MJ Espiritu-Gerometta of Pivotal Foods who created the conference menus and was on hand to personally oversee all lunches, breaks and Friday evening's ice breaker. She also donated many of her incredible vegan products.
Special recognition to: International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW), The Kerr Family Foundation, Dr. Julia Allen, Kimberly McDonald Fine Jewelry, and Miyoko's-Tomorrow's Creamery, and Cindy Klein Anderson for her amazing vegan baked goodies.

We sincerely appreciate the professional team at the Pickwick Gardens Conference Center led by Manager Diana Valenzuela and Executive Chef Christopher Lopez. Their efficient and attentive service was evident from initial planning to final clean up.
Click here to view the PAWS conference program and here to read our speakers' biographies.
The PAWS International Captive Wildlife Conference is a vital part of our education and advocacy work. Please support this very important effort by making a donation today (yes, we are already starting to plan the 2020 conference!).

PAWS' veterinarian, Dr. Jackie Gai, administers a therapeutic foot soak for a burned duck rescued from the  Camp Fire in Northern  California .

Helping Animals
Injured by the Camp Fire

By Dr. Jackie Gai, DVM
PAWS Director of Veterinary Services
Earlier this month three wildfires exploded in California, including the Camp Fire near the town of Paradise in Northern California, now being called the deadliest wildfire in the State's history. Although the fire was located more than 150 miles from any of PAWS' sanctuaries, I felt overwhelming sadness and grief for the people and animals in harms' way and was anxious to help.
I am a member of the California Veterinary Medical Reserve Corps (CAVMRC), a branch of the California Veterinary Medical Association which includes hundreds of volunteer veterinarians, veterinary technicians, and other skilled people in the veterinary field. Members of the CAVMRC are deployed to disaster sites at the request of state officials when large numbers of animals are in need of care, as was the case with the Camp Fire.
The CAVMRC contacted me and I was officially deployed to the Paradise area to help. I had the honor and privilege of working alongside many dedicated and talented veterinary professionals at two major animal shelter sites in Butte County, one in the town of Chico and one in Oroville. The shelters provide temporary housing for animals whose owners lost their homes in the fire, as well as provide care for rescued animals whose owners are not yet known. Many of the animals had suffered burns, smoke inhalation, and other injuries, and all received round-the-clock care. We cared for cats, dogs, parrots, chickens, geese, ducks, chinchillas, rabbits, and more. It was a deeply moving experience to see so many people selflessly give their time and talents to ease pain, and to help animals feel safe and secure in what must have been a frightening and disorienting situation.
In order to free up space for animals who were still being found days after the fire began, animals with the most significant injuries were transferred to a wide network of veterinary hospitals throughout Northern California for intensive care. I offered to transport five injured ducks from the Chico shelter to the Suisun Wildlife Center in Solano County where I have been volunteering for many years. One of the ducks has significant burns to her feet and legs, requiring daily soaks, bandage changes, and medications to alleviate pain and fight infection. Two others have severe burns on their beaks, faces, and necks. The last two have minor burns to their faces and necks, and all suffered smoke inhalation. The dedicated and hard-working staff and volunteers at the wildlife center are providing excellent care for these feathered fire victims, and I am eternally grateful for their offer of help and for their skills and expertise in caring for sick and injured wildlife.
It is inspiring and uplifting to know that, right now, there are hundreds of colleagues working hard to help the animals affected by this devastating tragedy. There are no words sufficient to express the depth of sorrow we feel for the lives lost, the homes and livelihoods destroyed, and the total devastation of an entire community. All we can do is to lend our love and support whenever and wherever possible, including healing the animals that once called Paradise home.
For more information or to donate:

Thank You for Making #GivingTuesday
a BIG Success for PAWS' Elephants!
PAWS thanks everyone who donated and made #GivingTuesday a terrific success for the eight elephants at our sanctuary. Through your compassion and generosity, PAWS far exceeded its fundraising goal of $50,000 in 24 hours to care for Maggie, Mara, Lulu, Gypsy, Thika, Toka, Nicholas and Prince. Your contributions provide daily care and veterinary treatments, nutritious diets, and special medications for our older elephants.

PAWS is very grateful to the donors who provided matching grants, including three anonymous donors who gave a total of $35,150, $10,000 from Sandy Monticelli, $2,500 from Shelly and Peter Zwick, and $1,000 from Dan and Jenny Zouk.

#GivingTuesday is an annual day of charitable giving that takes place on the Tuesday after Thanksgiving and benefits nonprofits everywhere. If you were unable to donate on #GivingTuesday and would like to help the elephants and other wild animals at PAWS, you can make a donation by clicking  here .
Zeus and Mookie
PAWS Bids Farewell to Two Special Tigers

PAWS is saddened to report the recent passing of two beloved, older tigers. Both came to us with prior histories of hardship, and both flourished at ARK 2000 under the attentive care of our highly experienced staff. No matter what experiences a tiger may have had before coming to our sanctuary, all benefit from having room to roam, grass and trees, and the freedom to simply be a tiger. Our veterinary and caregiving staff specialize in individualized care for elderly animals and those with special needs, optimizing comfort and good health by providing excellent nutrition, medical care when needed, and many creature comforts.
Zeus , his brother Apollo, and Jake, who passed away earlier this year, arrived at PAWS in April 2012. The three tigers had been rescued from a failing exotic animal facility in Ohio. Zeus was big, both in personality and in size, and had a very close bond with Apollo. Brave and curious, Zeus was always the first to investigate new logs or branches placed in his habitat and would often show his appreciation by rolling around on top of them. When he began showing signs earlier this year of unsteadiness when walking, a comprehensive exam by our veterinarians revealed severe degenerative joint disease involving his entire spine that was pinching his spinal cord and causing problems with balance and gait. Typically seen in older tigers, this condition may have been made worse by inadequate nutrition as a cub. Zeus received supportive medications and supplements after his diagnosis, and did well for almost a year until his mobility suddenly worsened to the point where he was unable to walk more than a few steps without falling. As his condition was not surgically repairable, and medications were no longer helping, the difficult but most compassionate decision was made to euthanize him. Zeus passed from this life on October 29, surrounded by many who loved him. He was 16 years old. His noble, resilient, and tough personality will be missed by all.
Mookie came to PAWS in 2004, one of 39 tigers rescued from horrific neglect and abuse at a defunct exotic animal facility in Colton, California, misleadingly named "Tiger Rescue." She was a beautiful tiger, with a rich, copper-brown colored coat and an easily recognizable and expressive face. Carnivore supervisor Renae remembers Mookie as the most vocal tiger of all, always talkative and "chuffing" a greeting when caregivers approached. During Open House events at ARK 2000, Renae stands near the tiger habitat and shares the animals' stories with visitors. Friendly Mookie would often be close by, just on the other side of the fence, commenting every now and then with her unique and expressive voice. Mookie especially loved tiger Alka, and the two slept together every night. Like Zeus, she enjoyed big logs in her enclosure and would rub and drool on them to show her enjoyment. Mookie battled chronic urinary tract disease during the last several months but did well on special medications and supplements to support kidney function. When her kidneys began to fail in mid-November she lost her appetite and her spark, and again the heart-wrenching but most caring decision was made to euthanize her. Mookie passed from this life on November 19, at the estimated age of 19+ years. Mookie's playful, talkative spirit, and her beautiful face, will be missed by all.

Good News for Animals
Kudos to PETA for protecting big cats! Their successful lawsuit shut down a veterinarian who illegally declawed lions, tigers, and big cat hybrids at Wildlife in Need, a roadside zoo in Indiana that charges the public to take photos with baby wild animals. Importantly, the court order sets the precedent that declawing endangered and threatened big or exotic cats when not medically necessary violates the Endangered Species Act. Declawing is a cruel procedure that involves surgical amputation of the last bone of each toe, leaving the cat with lifelong chronic pain and lameness. If this surgery were performed on a human being, it would be like cutting off each finger at the last knuckle. PAWS' longtime friend Dr. Jennifer Conrad is a veterinarian and founder of The Paw Project, which educates the public about the painful and crippling effects of feline declawing and works to ban the practice through legislation. For more information on the declawing of domestic and exotic cats, visit .
Portugal has banned the use of all wild animals in circuses by 2024 . Lions, tigers, elephants, camels and zebras are among the more than 1,000 animals covered under the new law that lists about 40 species. Prior to 2024, circus owners will have to register their wild animals with the government so they can eventually be placed in wildlife shelters in Portugal or overseas. Those who relinquish their animals now may receive assistance in transitioning to a new profession.

Join PAWS for the ARK 2000
Holiday Open House December 8th
The holidays are near! Join PAWS at our ARK 2000 Holiday Open House where you can learn about the rescued and retired animals we care for at the sanctuary, holiday shop for family and friends, and support a great cause!

The Holiday Open House takes place on Saturday, December 8, 2018, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. and a limited number of tickets are still available. Tickets are $50 for adults, $35 for seniors (65 and over) and $35 for children age 12 and under. Be sure to purchase your tickets early as this popular event always sells out. No tickets will be sold at the gate on the day of the event.
Visitors to the ARK 2000 Holiday Open House ride shuttles to the bear, big cat, 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 educate you about the animals and answer questions.

Don't miss the PAWS gift shop where you can purchase great holiday gifts for yourself, family and friends. We accept cash, checks and all major credit cards.
If you would like to bring a holiday gift for the animals, we suggest any of the following favorites: apples, oranges, bananas, carrots, squash, pumpkins, melons, pears, unsalted peanuts in the shell, fresh mint leaves and fresh rosemary. You may drop off your gift by the front gate, or near the gift shop table.
Two ways to purchase your tickets: Click on the button below 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, December 6, 2018, or earlier if this event sells out.

The PAWS Holiday Open House happens rain or shine. Tickets are not refundable.
PLEASE READ: Folding wheelchairs and strollers may be taken on most shuttles. Special arrangements for visitors with power scooters and power wheelchairs can be made by calling Kim Gardner at 916-539-5305. Yes, you may bring your cameras but  no drones are allowed. There is no smoking on any PAWS property, including in our parking lots. We take fire prevention very seriously every day of the year. No pets are allowed on any PAWS property, including in our parking lots. Please leave your pets at home. Touching the animals is not allowed: visitors will be required to stay a safe distance away from all animals.
Thank You November
Amazon Wish List Donors
Mary Seltzer Stempien: one 8 oz. bottle of EicosaDerm, one 25 lb. bag of peanuts. Celine Ehrhart: one Probiocin. Patricia L. Connelly: two bottles of Renal Essentials, 60#. Maria M Mitchell: one 5 lb. tub of Psyllium. Jan Johnson: three 8 oz. bottles of EicosaDerm, three Probiocin, five bags of diced Pineapple, five bags of diced Papaya. Chris Young: one bottle of Renal Essentials, 60#, one Probiocin, one 5 lb. tub of Psyllium. Carole Bognar: one 5 lb. tub of Psyllium, one gal. Red Cell. Cece Littlepage: four Rainbird sprinkler heads. Jane G. Droogsma: one case of copy paper, two boxes of 13 gal. trash bags, two packets of AA batteries, 24#, one qt. of Red Cell, one Rainbird sprinkler head. Lisa Klotz: two Probiocin. Willie and Jan Nelson: one 10 lb. tub of Psyllium. Margaret Kane: one Rainbird sprinkler head. Beverly Archer: one Rainbird sprinkler head. Elizabeth A. Stelow: one 25 lb. bag of peanuts. Darlene S. Murchison: one bottle of CosequinDS, 132#. Anonymous Donors: one bottle of CosequinDS, 132#, ten bottles of Emcelle Tocopherol, one 3-pk Clorox bleach, two qts. Red Cell, one 24" push broom, two 8 oz. bottles of EicosaDerm, three tables, two Probiocin, one bottle of Renal Essentials, 60#, six bottles of 121 oz. Clorox bleach.

Click on PAWS' "wish list" links 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' special ongoing fundraisers: the "Dollars for Dirt" campaign for PAWS' elephants, or the "Support a Rescued Tiger" campaign to benefit the 17 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 tigers, bears, elephants, and other animals that call our sanctuaries home. As animals age, their needs change and they may develop arthritis, kidney disease, and other conditions that are readily treatable with proper care. PAWS expert animal care and veterinary staff provide specialized nutritional and medical support, 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