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Saving The Dancing Bears Of India

Updated on December 17, 2013

Wildlife S.O.S. is Saving The Dancing Bears Of India

Here, I'll share with you the tragic story of the Dancing Bears of India and the uplifting story of their ongoing rescue. As you read their story, you may wince and want to stop, but please read on. There IS hope for these mistreated Sloth Bears.

Wildlife S.O.S. (the only Dancing Bear Rescue and Sanctuaries in India) has been rescuing and rehabilitating these bears since 2002.

Read more about this wonderful organization, their founders and bear-givers (did you get that? like care-givers. I coined that, I think -- LOL) and their programs below. You'll see it's not as simple as just getting the bears off the streets and into the sanctuary. There is so much more: the rehabilitation of the traumatized bears; teaching them how to be bears; the ongoing care and feeding of 600 bears; the veterinarian care; the retraining the bears "owners"; and stopping the poachers -- to name just a few.

Read on and learn about the past, the present and the future of these wonderful Sloth Bears and how Wildlife S.O.S. is saving the Dancing Bears of India, one bear at a time.

Crowdwise Holiday Challenge - Save Nepals Dancing Bears

Rescued Bear
Rescued Bear

You can help have Nepals Dancing Bears through the Crowdwise Holiday Challenge. To read more about the campaign an dhow you can help,Click on the photo above or Save Nepals Dancing Bears and you'll be taken to the challenge.

dancing bear of india
dancing bear of india

This silhouetted dancing bear graphic will represent Dancing Bears. This is in protest to the use of sloth bears as Dancing Bears and will also warn that graphic descriptions are in the module.

Sloth Bear with Cubs - How Sloth Bears Should live

Sloth Bear with Cubs - How Sloth Bears Should live
Sloth Bear with Cubs - How Sloth Bears Should live

BREAKING NEWS: Dec. 18, 2009

One of the last dancing bears surrendered

BREAKING NEWS-December 18, 2009: One of the last remaining Dancing Bear was surrendered to Wildlife S.O.S. bringing an end to the centuries-old tradition that inflicted terrible cruelty on thousands of highly endangered sloth bears.

Although the practice of dancing bears was made illegal in India when the Wildlife Protection Act of 1972 came into effect, it wasn't until the end of 2002, when the Wildlife SOS Agra Bear Rescue Facility opened its doors, that there was anywhere to house the rescued bears. (The tortured bears can not be returned to the wild because they can not survived on their own.)

The work now will focus on the rehabilitation of the 600+ bears and maintaining the rescue facilities that will house these bears for life. Wildlife S.O.S. will also be able to focus more energy and funds on protecting the sloth bears in the wild.

A very happy and momentous day in wildlife conservation and animal welfare.

EDITOR'S NOTE from the press release:

With informants across the country, and a recently concluded advertising campaign designed to encourage bear dancers to turn in their bears, Wildlife SOS is confident that there are only about 30 or so remaining dancing bears in India. However, given India's vast size and rather porous borders, Wildlife SOS recognizes the possibility that there may be a few more dancing bears hidden away in remote areas, or in neighboring countries, and remains firmly committed to rescuing any bears that may be discovered in the future.The work is not over, however, as the the over 600 rescued bears must live in the bear sanctuaries.

For the full press release, click Final Curtain

How The Sloth Bears Are Captured

Poacher take over 100 Sloth Bear cubs per year from the wild. The cubs, who are snatched from their mothers when they are just weeks old, witness their mothers being brutally killed while trying to defend them.

These cubs are taken to be sold to the Kalandars, a nomadic people, who turn them into "Dancing Bears". The majority of cubs often die before reaching the Kalandars' villages from trauma, dehydration, starvation or all three.

Those who survive are sold for about 8,000 rupees each ($200).

A Sloth Bear Cub Saved From Poachers

Safely At Wildlife Rescue

This little guy is one of the lucky ones. He was saved from poachers by Wildlife S.O.S. before they reached the Kalandar buyer. He will be hand-raised and taught to be a bear. He'll grow up with and play with the other cubs and bears that are saved. He'll do bear things and be safe while doing them. He will have a good and long life thanks to Wildlife S.O.S. and their commitment to save all of these wonderful bears.

Poached Sloth Bear Cubs Introduction To The Kalandars

The cubs are most often tiny and fragile when captured and are roughly handled by the poachers. Enduring severe shock compounded by fear, the cubs finally arrive at a Kalandars village.

When they arrive, their torment continues. The Kalandar, who want the bear to be submissive so all in their power to dominate the cub. The cubs first few days are spent under an upside-down basket. In the Dark. Without food, water, or contact of any kind.

Next the cub is taken from under the basket and tied to a post in the village where the children torment the already frightened animal.

Before the age of 6 months, the cub's muzzle is pierced with a red-hot poker, without anesthesia. The poker is forced through the bone, cartilage and nerve membrane in the top of the muzzle. A coarse rope is then pulled through the wound, sometimes resulting in an infection.

In many cases, a second piercing is necessary, usually done before the first wound has healed. Before they reach a year old, their teeth are knocked out with a hammer -- with no anesthetic.

Between 60% and 70% of the cubs die before they can be trained. Surviving cubs suffer a punishing regime of beatings and starvation to make them submissive to their trainers. Cubs normally spend at least two years with their mothers, so it is not difficult to imagine their fear as they are subjected to an unnatural existence ridden with pain.

Another Cub Saved By Wildlife S.O.S. (Still In Poacher's Bag)

Another Cub Saved By Wildlife S.O.S. (Still In Poacher's Bag)
Another Cub Saved By Wildlife S.O.S. (Still In Poacher's Bag)

How Sloth Bears Are Trained To Dance

To train the bear to dance, hot coals are placed under their feet and the muzzle pain is exacerbated as the trainer pulls on the rope forcing the cub to stand upright. Under their thick collars, cuts are made to inflict more pain, thus the bears' undivided attention and complete compliance.

Once upright the trainers strike each hind paw with a stick. To avoid the pain, the bear lifts each foot in turn. Eventually, the trainer has only to strike the ground for the bear to lift its feet. It is now a "dancing" bear. A tap on the muzzle causes the bear to fold its paws over its nose in a gesture of "greeting" to amuse the audience.

The bear is taught to fear its owner, a simple matter when the animal is small. As the bear gets bigger and stronger, the owner, needing to exert full control, reinforces the fear by hitting the animal across the face with sticks and ropes.

If the bear shows any sign of rebellion, the rope through the muzzle is forcibly pulled to make the bear stand and, in many cases, the muzzle is re-pierced to exert control through further pain.

In the end, the spirit is broken.

Contented Rescued Bear At Wildlife S.O.S. Agra Sanctuary In Agra

Contented Rescued Bear At Wildlife S.O.S. Agra Sanctuary In Agra
Contented Rescued Bear At Wildlife S.O.S. Agra Sanctuary In Agra

After Training - Taking The Dancing Bear On The Road

The Suffering Continues

Once trained, the bears travel with their owners for eight or nine months of the year, often over long distances and mostly on foot. On average, the bears work about 6 hours a day and up to 10 hours for special occasions such as weddings, festivals and fairs. While on the road the trainer may allow his bear to have enough leeway on the rope to forage by the roadside for ants or other insects. Life on the road is hard for both bear and owner, no form of medical help is available for either.

The bears may suffer, and die, from stress, training methods, gastro-intestinaldisorders, respiratory diseases and worm infestations. When medical help is needed, the Kalandars rarely consult a vet, preferring instead to ask village elders for advice.

Laila -- Another saved bear cub

Laila -- Another saved bear cub
Laila -- Another saved bear cub

A Dancing Bears Fate When They Can No Longer Dance

A Dancing Bear has several fates that await her when she can no longer dance due to age or illness (most have tuberculosis)...

Many are transported to Nepal, Bangladesh or Pakistan where they are killed for their gall bladder or as a entrée in a gourmet dinner.

Others have their gall bladders harvested for eastern medicine. India is the 4th largest supplier of gall bladders to Japan according to Traffic International.

The Indian Sloth Bear is also the bear used in the bear baiting fights in Pakistan where the bear is tied up, then dogs are set on it. The bears that survive after a fight is stopped, are put up to fight again after her bite wounds heal. A bear usually only lasts 3 fights before she is literally torn to pieces.

A rescued cub at Wildlife S.O.S. Sanctuary

A rescued cub at Wildlife S.O.S. Sanctuary
A rescued cub at Wildlife S.O.S. Sanctuary

The Statistics Behind The Dancing Bears

The statistics are gruesome

Even though the Sloth Bear is a protected animal under Schedule 1 of the Indian Wildlife Protection Act, 1972, over 100 cubs a year are poached for the Dancing Bear trade. Here's what happens to them.

A total of 60% to 70% of the cubs die before training.

20% from shock of separation from their mothers

20% to 40% die during transportation

20% die during early handling

40% of the remaining cubs die during their first year.

Life Expectancy:

Dancing Bears - 7 to 8 years

Wild Sloth Bears - up to 30 years

Wildlife S.O.S.

Saving The Dancing Bears of India.

India's First Sanctuaries For Dancing Bears

Founded And Operated By Wildlife S.O.S.

In 1998, Wildlife SOS, an Indian Charity dedicated to saving India's animals, was offered land to build the first ever rescue center for bears in India. Co-founders, Geeta Seshamani and Kartick Satyanarayan, undertook an 18-month research project to understand the issues and the needs of the bears and the Kalandar people and developed the India Bear Rescue Project and Tribal Rehabilitation.

In 1999 construction of the sanctuary began within the Sur Sarovar Bird Sanctuary near Agra. A 2,000 acre forestry department owned conservation area, just a few miles away from the world famous Taj Mahal.

In December 2002, the sanctuary was completed with joint funding from UK charity International Animal Rescue, and the Australian group Free The Bears Fund. The first six bears were rescued on Christmas Eve of that year.

The site is secure, with a walled perimeter and electric fencing. It has man-made dens, several large pools, quarantine dens and socialization areas, a state of the art veterinary clinic and laboratory, food preparation and storage rooms. The goal is to make the bears as comfortable as possible and the sanctuary is as close to a wild environment as possible, with artificial means being used where necessary to help the bears.

By January 2007 the number of bears rescued by Wildlife SOS and International Animal Rescue had risen to more than 350. After signing a memorandum of understanding (MOU ) with the Forestry Department in the southern state of Karnataka, the two charities took on a second sanctuary in Bannerghatta near Bangalore., using the tried and tested successful methods adopted in Agra. An additional 145 acres of adjacent forest land has been acquired in Agra to allow expansion, and holding centers in Bhopal and Hyderabad are also taking in rescued bears.

For frequently asked questions about the Dancing Bears of India, click Frequently asked questions

As of Dec. 2008, 500 bears have been rescued and are being rehabilitated at 4 Wildlife S.O.S. bear sanctuaries.

Video: Rescue Of Sloth Bear Cubs by Wildlife S.O.S.

For The Love Of Sloth Bears

Co-founder, Geeta Seshamani

As you can see by this picture of Co-founder, Geeta Seshamani, and the one below of Co-founder, Kartick Styanarayan, they love these bears and the bears love them in return.

To meet a few of the rescued bears in a Wildlife S.O.S. facility, click Meet the Bears.

6-week-old cub just rescued from poacher

6-week-old cub just rescued from poacher
6-week-old cub just rescued from poacher

Dancing Bears Arrive Wildlife S.O.S. Sanctuary

The Stories of Chameli, Goa and Raju

One of the bears rescued by the sanctuary, Chameli, arrived with her nose full of maggots and a worm burden. She was severely malnourished, having lived on a meager diet of plain rhoti (Indian bread). Now her muzzle has healed and her body weight has almost doubled. She now has the thick, shaggy, black and lustrous coat which all healthy Sloth bears should have. Although wary of humans Chameli does not know, she is still a much happier bear and safe for the rest of her life.

Apart from the dancing bears in the sanctuary, two new arrivals came from a "wild life reserve" in Bondla, Goa where they had been caged, tied by a rope from their noses to the bars of their cages. Another bear, Raju, who featured in a short film "The Final Cut" produced by International Animal Rescue, has also joined the bears in the sanctuary.

The sanctuaries in Agra and Bannerghatta are beacons of hope for the dancing bears of India. With goodwill, funding education and the enforcement of animal welfare laws, hopefully it won't be long before all the sloth bears still dancing on the streets of India, find a safe haven in the sanctuaries, while those bears still in the wild are allowed to roam freely and free from persecution.

What to do if you see a Dancing Bear

How you can help stop the dance

Do NOT give money

Some people give money to get the trainer to stop the dancing while others refuse hoping if they don't give money the dancing will stop.

Unfortunately, the bear loses whether you give money or not. If the trainer gets money for getting them to dance, then they make them dance; if they get money to stop them from dancing, they make them dance so they can get money from those caring folks. They really play into the westerner's heartstrings and we can't help but give to stop the pain; unfortunately it only the stops the pain for a few minutes (until you are no longer on the scene).

DO contact police immediately

Wildlife S.O.S. (WSOS) has created an educational program at the schools and also in public with posters, etc. to let people know to not give money. They advise people to report them to the authorities (police) immediately and tell them exactly where the trainer and bear are. That allows the police to get a rep from Wildlife S.O.S. and together they swoop in arresting the trainer and WSOS takes the bear to the sanctuary.

Danny

Little Danny was five years of age when rescued and barely weighed 52 kilos. Today, after three years with us, Danny has become a handsome 120 kilo bear with a full coat. Although he is 8 years of age now, Danny plays in the pond like a youngster, and climbs trees with relish. Danny enjoys the company of his new friend Kavya bear, whom he likes very much.

To read more about her and other rescued dancing bears and saved cubs, click HERE

Saved Sloth Bears Playing at the Sanctuary - Dancing bears free at last!

This Lens Supports Wildlife S.O.S. To Help Save The Dancing Bears Of India

All royalties raised on this lens are donated to Wildlife S.O.S. for their "India Bear Rescue" Project.

You can help save the bears by making your TAX EXEMPT donation to Save the bears

Another Contented Sloth Bear Cub At A Wildlife S.O.S. Dancing Bear Sanctuary

Another Contented Sloth Bear Cub At A Wildlife S.O.S. Dancing Bear Sanctuary
Another Contented Sloth Bear Cub At A Wildlife S.O.S. Dancing Bear Sanctuary

Show Your Support For Wildlife S.O.S.

Get this adorable image of a Sloth Bear on t-shirts, hats and other apparel. To see all products with this design, click More Products

India Bear Rescue Project

Much More Than Bear Rescue And Sanctuaries

Wildlife S.O.S. India Bear Rescue does more than attack the problem of dancing bears. They also are addressing the CAUSES. Here are 3 examples of other programs that are run in conjunction with the bear rescue:

1. Tribal Rehabilitation - a vocational training Project with much needed financial support from The Ford Foundation to retrain the Kalandar for better and more productive lives.

2. Forest Watch which is their undercover team, dedicated towards stopping the poaching and trade of bears and bear cubs in India. The team works closely with the forest department and the police in various states across the country.

3. Education where they hold Conservation Education Workshops where students are immersed in the world of bears at a bear sanctuary; exposed to the cruel and illegal practice of the wildlife trade: sensitized to issues and plight of both the Indian sloth bear and the impoverished kalandars.

Another Saved Bears Smiling In His New Home - Agra Sanctuary

Another Saved Bears Smiling In His New Home - Agra Sanctuary
Another Saved Bears Smiling In His New Home - Agra Sanctuary

Sloth Bear Photo

Photo of sloth bear taken at WSOS' Sloth Bear Rescue Center

I found this travel blog entry by a fellow named Trent when he visited Wildlife SOS (WSOS) Bear Rescue Center in Agra. To see his travel blog about his experience, click Sloth Bear Rescue Center

Mahatma Gandhi quote

"The greatness of a nation and it's moral progress can be determined by the ways it treats it's animals."

Mahatma Gandhi

POEM: Dancing Bears of India

The people gathered round, to see the bear perform his dance.

He didn't have a choice you see, he didn't stand a chance.

His muzzle had been pierced with a red hot iron bar.

His owner would make sure he didn't wander very far.

He was captured as a baby with just this thing in mind.

His mother she was slaughtered and her cub was left behind.

He was taken to the city in a cage with iron bars.

He was lonely and was frightened of all the trucks and cars.

They left him in a little cage, tied with a rope and chain.

Then, they made him dance all day out in the sun and rain

They tugged hard on the rope, that was threaded through his nose.

They poked him with a big thick stick, to dance up on his toes.

They pulled his canine teeth out, he couldn't eat his natural food.

They tried to feed him other things but it wasn't any good.

He got sick with malnutrition and was left to die in pain.

The people that would do these things must really be insane.

Maureen Flynn-Smith (ching.cass@bigpond.com)

Copyright © 2003 by Maureen Flynn-Smith. All Rights Reserved

May be used in unchanged form by avowed Animal Rightists if accompanied by this copyright message.

Co-founder, Kartick Satyanarayan, with rescued cub

Co-founder, Kartick Satyanarayan, with rescued cub
Co-founder, Kartick Satyanarayan, with rescued cub

Kartick Satyanarayan - Champion of India's Dancing Bears

To tell the day-to-day-in-the-bush rescues of these battered sloth bears, I've created a lens about Kartick Satyanarayan, Co-founder and Director of Wildlife S.O.S. (WSOS)

Kartick, known as the BEAR MAN in India, risks life and limb to save these battered bears.

Along with photos, the lens has a video of an actual undercover rescue of bear cubs from poachers and more information about WSOS and their India Bear Rescue Project. Check it out at Katrick Satyanarayan - Champion of India's Dancing Bears

Here Now!

A lens about Geeta Seshamani whose passion for animals prompted her to start Friendicoes Society for the Eradication of Cruelty to Animals.

Then, after seeing a dancing bear, recruited Kartick to help her "STOP THE DANCE". Her vision and hard work brought Wildlife S.O.S. into existence and keeps it running strong.

Create a Lens To Support Wildlife S.O.S.

You too can make a page like this one and have all or a percentage of the Squidoo Royalties go directly to Wildlife S.O.S. to help save the bears.

The lens can be on anything you want. About your cat, your car, whatever you care about. Believe me, you are an expert in something. If you don't think so, put together a lens about something you are learning -- walk us through the steps -- the where, why, when and how of it.

To make a lens now, click

Another sloth cub rescued from poachers

Another sloth cub rescued from poachers
Another sloth cub rescued from poachers

If not you, who? If not now, when?

Purple Star Received on 9/18/10

A special thanks to Lensmasters Bonnie and Robin for making this lens a Purple Star recipient.

Link To This Lens

WANT TO LINK TO THIS PAGE?

Here's the HTML code to copy and paste:
Saving The Dancing Bears of India

Copyright

This work is covered by copyright and can not be reprinted

in any matter (physical or digital) without prior written consent.

Copyright 2008-2013 Frankie Kangas All rights reserved.

Your comments about this lens, Dancing Bears of India, and/or Wildlife S.O.S. is much appreciated. Thank you and bear hugs, Frankster aka Bearmeister

Guest Book For Your Feedback

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    • profile image

      Janet1 9 years ago

      Another wonderful lens, Frankster. You showed the horrors being done to these bears and at the same time showed me the hope and good that Wildlife SOS is doing. I support them 100%. Thank you for sharing. I had no idea. 5 stars and another favorite. Janet

    • Karendelac profile image

      Karendelac 9 years ago

      5 Stars ~~ I would give you 50 stars if I could.

      Lensrolled to all my sites, favorited.

      Now and again an issue in life and livingness touches one's heart.

      You have the poignant story beautifully told and I salute you Frankie.

      Take a bow.

      love,

      Karen de la Carriere

    • profile image

      bdkz 9 years ago

      This is a beautiful lens for a beautiful animal! 5 Stars and a Squid Angel Blessing!

    • profile image

      antiaging-skin-care 9 years ago

      Thank you for such a sensitive treatment of a horrible problem. Well done. 5 stars and a favorite.

    • SusanDeppner profile image

      Susan Deppner 9 years ago from Arkansas USA

      Frankie, you've done an amazing job here. What a wonderful opportunity for you to actually go and help in this great cause. Thanks for sharing this with the world.

      Susan

    • RuthCoffee profile image

      RuthCoffee 9 years ago

      Why do people do what they do...wonderful lens!

    • profile image

      spiritartist 9 years ago

      I am sooo excited for you Frankie!!******!! The pictures of the cruelty break my heart, however I am comforted by your intervention. I know you will do a world of good for these wonderful creatures!! Keep up the GREAT work and have a wonderful trip! I've lensrolled this on my animal spirits lens as well!

      Bear Hugs, Sandy

    • ecogranny profile image

      Kathryn Grace 9 years ago from San Francisco

      Frankster, thank you for building this page. I first learned of the dancing bears several years ago, and grieved for the suffering and the human need for spectacles at any cost. Your focus on Wildlife SOS and its founders heartens me, and I blogged about it at http://tinyurl.com/3ot89p. I look forward to hearing about your trip to India.

    • Franksterk profile image
      Author

      Frankie Kangas 9 years ago from California

      Thank you all for your support and passing the information on to others. The bears need our help! Bear hugs, Frankie

    • pylemountain1 profile image

      pylemountain1 9 years ago

      An eye opening lens. I had know idea...

    • ronpass lm profile image

      ronpass lm 9 years ago

      Frankie - I was distressed when I read this lens. The cruelty is beyond comprehension. Every best wish for a successful trip to India. Once again you are showing your true stripes as a Giant Squid - what an inspiration. I've added a black box link to this site on my PandasRule lens.

    • profile image

      SusanK 9 years ago

      Frankie,

      Pray all goes well for you on your trip to India. Hopefully, you will be successful in getting the last of the "dancing bears" off the streets of India. That would truly be something to dance about!

    • profile image

      Angel-Sky 9 years ago

      Cool! This is a wonderful lens! Thanks for bringing it to us! Please check out my site about low cost car insurance, how to obtain cheap classic car insurance and car insurance for females 5 stars for your wonderful lens!! I really appreciate your effort.

    • profile image

      ronyrost 9 years ago

      We should kill the poachers rather..

      Rony

      Hair Loss Treatment

    • profile image

      johnmarah 9 years ago

      I am fond of bears and hate those killers..

      John

      Hemroids

    • profile image

      dandor 9 years ago

      On my visit to India, I saw some guys having pet bears dancing round the sreets to make money.

      Was strange

      Dan

      Skin Tags

    • profile image

      Ramarojah 9 years ago

      Awareness to some good stuff.

      Rama

      Buses for Sale

    • profile image

      RamyaV 9 years ago

      I support anti-poaching

    • profile image

      enslavedbyfaeries 9 years ago

      It saddens me to think about the horrors that animals endure at the hands of humans. I saw a documentary about this cruel practice a while back and I'm so happy to see a lens that is raising awareness and supporting Wildlife S.O.S. I'm rolling this to a few of my animal cruelty/resuce lenses. 5*'s!!

    • profile image

      Oran-Kangas 9 years ago

      Well honey, this is another of your best lenses, IMHO. I wish I could go to India with you. I'll miss you but I know you'll have a great time doing what you love -- saving bears (animals). I'm proud of you and what you do.

    • profile image

      totalhealth 9 years ago

      it's a pity that those animals are being treated cruelly.

    • profile image

      jerryswrite 9 years ago

      Terrific lens which I found out about from your Kartick lens. Wow, that one is way cool too! 5 stars, favorite and I've always been a fan.

    • profile image

      ZachG LM 9 years ago

      I went to India a couple years ago and saw this taking place, and it infuriated me. I can't believe people would be so cruel just to make a buck. Great lens.

    • profile image

      beachbum_gabby 9 years ago

      very impressed on your lens and I congratulates your team for saving the helpless bears. 5* to you all!

    • chefkeem profile image

      Achim Thiemermann 9 years ago from Austin, Texas

      Fabulous work, Frankie. 5*s

      Welcome to: www.squidoo.com/groups/squidoo-activists

    • profile image

      Oran-Kangas 9 years ago

      Great site Frankster! Many Bear Hugs for bringing attention to their plight.

    • profile image

      Janet1 9 years ago

      Bravo on a great lens Frankster! 5 stars

    • profile image

      CherylStoney 9 years ago

      This lens is both heartbreaking and uplifting. Great Great job!

    • LisaDH profile image

      LisaDH 9 years ago

      I remember seeing a "dancing bear" when we were in India, and it was awful. I'm so glad to hear there are people trying to rescue these animals. Keep up the good work! 5*

    • profile image

      anonymous 8 years ago

      It is so sad what humans do to animals. This is a great page to share the fate of these wonderful bears. Thank you, thank you for getting the word out. I pray they are all saved. I can't Wildlife SOS enough for the work they do.

    • ArtByLinda profile image

      Linda Hoxie 8 years ago from Idaho

      Another well done lens, and congratulations on your trip to India, Bless you for being part of saving these bears! 5* Linda

    • EuroSquid LM profile image

      EuroSquid LM 8 years ago

      When you really want to eat a bear:

      http://www.squidoo.com/GummiBears

    • chefkeem profile image

      Achim Thiemermann 8 years ago from Austin, Texas

      Here's your extremely well-deserved Angel Blessing, Frankster! I'm still in AK but I will be back home by October 1st (weather permitting, of course). :-)

    • profile image

      Sherry_2007 8 years ago

      Thank you for bringing this terrible cruelty to light and even though it breaks my heart to hear of this, their story must be told!

      Poor sweet little bears. How cruel humankind can be!

    • ElizabethJeanAl profile image

      ElizabethJeanAl 8 years ago

      What an adorable critter and a wonderful lens. Your passion is showing.

      Lizzy

    • naturegirl7s profile image

      Yvonne L. B. 8 years ago from Covington, LA

      Thanks for making such an important lens. May its message be heard so that no other bear will suffer. Welcome to the Naturally Native Squids group. Don't forget to add your lens links to the appropriate plexos and vote for them.

    • profile image

      JessieA 8 years ago

      This lens is so moving! Thank you so much for educating people about the horrific things that these little bears go through! Great Job! 5 Stars from me.

    • profile image

      real_estate_hawaii 8 years ago

      This lens is a big help for the awareness of people about bears. Hope more people will rescue dancing bears. Great lens!

    • profile image

      ebeneara1 8 years ago

      It is very pleasure to visit this lens. The information is stuffed in a good manner and all of it is very useful. Thanks for your lens. The bear photo's are nice. I enjoyed your video. Check out my the ballroomdancequest blog.

    • Karicor profile image

      Karicor 8 years ago

      This kind of behavior by other "humans" is intolerable. Not even the most severe poverty is an excuse to treat another living being like this and I cannot comprehend what goes on in the minds of people who do this nor those who witness without reaction. My deepest respects for your bravery and resolution! I wish you success in your endeavors and will follow your travel blog once it's up. SquidAngel Blessings for the lens as well. This needs to stay in the spotlight!

    • profile image

      alasion 8 years ago

      Great lens,left me speechless.cannot understand the mentality of some people.I saw a news report in Cyprus some time ago.It caused public outrage in Cyprus.It was about a baby bear that was lost and fell in a river in Turkey.The current pushed the bear further down the river.The bear was exhausted,but managed to get on shore, the local Turks attacked it and beat it too death.It made me sick.

    • profile image

      ByeByeDWI 8 years ago

      Thank you for writing this important lens.

      Mark

      ByeByeDWI

    • kellywissink lm profile image

      kellywissink lm 8 years ago

      Great lens!

      Welcome to the Squidoo 50 Club!

    • RuthCoffee profile image

      RuthCoffee 8 years ago

      Hi, I'm back for another visit. Someone shared a site with me and it made me think of you so I just wanted to pass it along as an fyi...http://ursafreedomproject.ning.com/ Obviously someone else trying to improve the plight of bears!

    • Franksterk profile image
      Author

      Frankie Kangas 8 years ago from California

      [in reply to mulberry] Thanks for sharing the link. I've added the link to my lens about the Asiatic Black Bear aka Himalayan aka Moon bear. The moon bears are also near and dear to my heart. I'm sickened just thinking about the torture they go through.

    • TopStyleTravel profile image

      TopStyleTravel 8 years ago

      Great lens on the plight of the bears. 5 stars! I was not aware of the problem with dancing bears in India before reading your lens.

    • profile image

      anonymous 8 years ago

      I saw the bears along the highway in India. Sickened by what I saw, it reinforces how cruel we are. The hopelessness I felt driving by these animals and all the many thousands of other species abused, murdered, starved and mamed should make us all act in some way to help these animals in dire need. Elephants, chimps, gorillas etc are suffering. We must care.

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      anonymous 8 years ago

      What a heart rending and heart warming lens. You and the bears are Blessed by an Angel.

    • religions7 profile image

      religions7 8 years ago

      blessed by a squidangel.

    • papawu profile image

      papawu 8 years ago

      All I can say is God Bless the Wildlife SOS! I actually had no idea there weer bears, let alone dancing bears in India. I thought it was more of a Russian thing, but I am truly glad that that there are people out there with the ability and capability of helping these beautifully brawny creatures.

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      anonymous 7 years ago

      this is so sad i didn't relise that this was happening

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      GrowWear 7 years ago

      Such a great lens. I wish I could bless it.

    • profile image

      anonymous 7 years ago

      I saw you on a show on Animal Planet & I just wanted to tell you that you really inspired me. You are doing something incredible

    • SusannaDuffy profile image

      Susanna Duffy 7 years ago from Melbourne Australia

      Maybe I shouldn't tell you this, but your lens made me cry. You made me very aware of the tragedy of the Sloth Bears. Blessed by an Angel who loves Animals (squidoo.com/angels-love-animals)

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      roysumit 7 years ago

      I am from India. I know all these happens here and street dancing of sloth bears were a common sight few years ago. The reason was random poaching and the poor people who made their livelihood out of it. But thanks to the persistent effort of Geeta Seshamani and Kartick Satyanarayan, the sloth bear street dancing show is rarely seen now a days. Hats off to Geeta and Kartick and also to you for such a great touching lens.

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      anonymous 7 years ago

      SOS ! you are doing excellent job..i wish i can do something to save bears...

    • Sylvestermouse profile image

      Cynthia Sylvestermouse 7 years ago from United States

      They are so beautiful and precious!!! How very sad and sickening it is that humans are so very heartless. Thank you for bringing this to my attention. I honestly had no idea.

    • JenOfChicago LM profile image

      JenOfChicago LM 7 years ago

      Congrats on the victory!

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      RinchenChodron 7 years ago

      Great news! Such wonderful progress. Long live the bears.

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      Janet1 7 years ago

      Congratulations to the Wildlife SOS team and the other groups that helped. Bless you Frankie for all you do for animals. You rock!

    • Sylvestermouse profile image

      Cynthia Sylvestermouse 7 years ago from United States

      I am returning on this very first day of being a Squid Angel to bless this awesome lens!

    • greenspirit profile image

      poppy mercer 7 years ago from London

      So moving, so painful, but so wonderful. When things are so bad, it is easy to look away. You don't...and you get results. I think that is called bravery.

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      anonymous 7 years ago

      What a tragety! Thanks for bringing this to our attention!

      -Jenny @ http://www.hemroidtreatmentnow.com

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      StreetHypnosis 7 years ago

      So are the bears in other countries besides India is it legal in the other countries?

    • Franksterk profile image
      Author

      Frankie Kangas 7 years ago from California

      @StreetHypnosis: I don't know if other countries have laws against the dancing of bears or not. I know that some cooperate with Wildlife SOS to return bears to India to their rehabilitation sanctuaries.

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      Critters4life 7 years ago

      HOw can people go on when they suject these animals to all this suffering. It's good that lens like these exist to alert the people who care. This inhumane and barbaric treatment must be put to a stop!!

    • Franksterk profile image
      Author

      Frankie Kangas 7 years ago from California

      @StreetHypnosis: Many other countries do not have animal rights. For instance, Nepal, is currently trying to figure out what to do with Rubina, a dancing bear, that was saved by animal rights activists. The activists want to send the bear to Wildlife SOS in India as they have not place in Nepal where the bear can be cared for properly.

    • svkhereiam1 profile image

      svkhereiam1 7 years ago

      very good lens. the recent years have seen some steps taken by the government and NGOs in bringing about changes in people's attitude towards animals. this is one lens I shall want everyone to read. favorited!

    • AlishaV profile image

      Alisha Vargas 6 years ago from Reno, Nevada

      It's so horrible what some people do to animals to amuse themselves, but I'm glad there are wonderful people saving these bears from as much pain and suffering as they can. And thank you for sharing their story and opening people's eyes up to the great injustice being done to these bears.

    • Grasmere Sue profile image

      Sue Dixon 6 years ago from Grasmere, Cumbria, UK

      A very moving lens. Blessed by an angel and added to my angel lens

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      anonymous 6 years ago

      Very touching story... I hope those bears will no longer be treated this way.

    • greenspirit profile image

      poppy mercer 6 years ago from London

      I've just come back again to say...yet again: I think your work is wonderful, and thank you for caring and making these really important lenses.

    • ElizabethSheppard profile image

      Elizabeth Sheppard 6 years ago from Bowling Green, Kentucky

      What a great lens, spotlighting some bears in trouble, and some rescued bears. What a great group that is helping them too!

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      anonymous 6 years ago

      This really helped with an assignment I had on dancing bears, it also opened my eyes to what really goes on. Good work.

    • Franksterk profile image
      Author

      Frankie Kangas 6 years ago from California

      @anonymous: Glad to help!

    • trezpazz profile image

      trezpazz 6 years ago

      Great Lens...kudos for highlighting the plight of bears.

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      anonymous 6 years ago

      Frankster, thanks for all the work you do to promote and honor charities through Squidoo!

      Congrats on having one of the 33 Best Charity Profiles!

      https://hubpages.com/community/monsterboards-best_...

    • ajgodinho profile image

      Anthony Godinho 6 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      What an excellent lens promoting awareness and helping spread the word on cruelty against the dancing bears of India. Appreciate all your work in the area of rescued animals!

    • kguru1979 lm profile image

      kguru1979 lm 6 years ago

      Wow .. I never heard about this .. nice lens...!

    • indigoj profile image

      Indigo Janson 6 years ago from UK

      Angel blessed for caring about the bears. These stories are heartbreaking but it's good to know people work hard to help them and raising awareness is all part of that.

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      sammittal 5 years ago

      Nice lens. We all either animals or trees are in a chain of nature. If chain breaks, all the system of nature will break. So save animals and trees. And also, save trees and save Earth.

    • rangiiria profile image

      rangiiria 5 years ago

      Bears are such powerful creatures. Your support for these wonderful animals is great. thanks for this lens :)

    • debnet profile image

      Debbie 5 years ago from England

      I once saw a chained bear being walked on the beach in Bulgaria. So sad. Blessed by a squid Angel ;)

    • sukkran trichy profile image

      sukkran trichy 5 years ago from Trichy/Tamil Nadu

      ~blessed by a squid angel~

    • sousababy profile image

      sousababy 5 years ago

      I saw a heartbreaking video about 10 years ago about the abuse of these dancing bears and I cried . . never forgot how horrible it was to watch a trainer beating these animals. Thank you so much for doing this lens. I really hope this kind of thing is becoming less common in some areas of the world (or not at all - one can hope). Love the Gandhi quote too. Added to Living Articles on Squidoo, hope it helps!

      Fondly,

      Rose

    • sousababy profile image

      sousababy 5 years ago

      Came back to google +1 this, so glad to see a purple star on this excellent lens. Take good care, Rose

    • girlfriendfactory profile image

      girlfriendfactory 5 years ago

      This very sad, yet terrifically presented lens is more than worthy of a Flyby Winging and it can be found among the other blessed lenses for today at Have Wings Will Bless! They may call me an aimless wanderer, but not all who wander are aimless and I'm glad my aim was good when I wandered upon this. ~Ren

    • jordanmilesbask profile image

      jordanmilesbask 5 years ago

      Poor bears! I can't believe they can do this to poor animals..thanks for sharing..

    • nikitakapoor profile image

      nikitakapoor 5 years ago

      Poor Bears! Thanks for creating such a great lens, keep up the good work! :)

      Do checkout my lens on India sometime and do let me know how do you feel about it! www.squidoo.com/what-to-see-in-india

    • wolvyz profile image

      wolvyz 5 years ago

      Save the bears

    • Lady Lorelei profile image

      Lorelei Cohen 5 years ago from Canada

      Thank god that there are people making a difference in the lives of abused and endangered animals. The lives of so many animals depend on these silent heroes. I hope that the dancing bears of India will simply one day be called the wild bears of India.

    • Sylvestermouse profile image

      Cynthia Sylvestermouse 4 years ago from United States

      In celebration of Friendship Day 2012, I am returning to some of my favorite lenses for fun, sharing and renewed blessings :) Friends Still Make it All Worthwhile!

    • Franksterk profile image
      Author

      Frankie Kangas 4 years ago from California

      @Sylvestermouse: Thank you for the return visit. Although all of the "dancing" bears have been saved that they know of, these bears still need monetary support to live in the sactuaries. They can't be returned to the wild because they never learned to take care of themselves. Bear hugs, Frankie

    • siobhanryan profile image

      siobhanryan 4 years ago

      Awesome-Blessed

    • ElizabethSheppard profile image

      Elizabeth Sheppard 4 years ago from Bowling Green, Kentucky

      It is great that you are helping to save these bears. Thank you!

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      aussiejon 4 years ago

      Your lens highlights a cause we should all get involved in, its so tragic... good to know that it seems most of the dancing beers have been freed, but still al ot of work to do assimilating them back into the wild

    • Sylvestermouse profile image

      Cynthia Sylvestermouse 4 years ago from United States

      Wishing you a year of many new blessings starting with this one! Happy New Year!

    • suepogson profile image

      suepogson 4 years ago

      The rescuers are amazing. Thank you for bringing this vile trade to our attention.

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      anonymous 4 years ago

      These bears featured now have a safe home to live in.Thakyou to all the people who saved them from a life of pain and suffering.Without your compassion and care they would still be at the mercy of their abusers..The laws of the country need to be tightened up so that this trade can be stopped for good.No animal should suffer they way they do.

    • Franksterk profile image
      Author

      Frankie Kangas 4 years ago from California

      @anonymous: Thank you for visiting. Although all of the bears known to be dancing in India have been saved, the cubs are still being poached and traded. Wildlife SOS (WSOS) still has to care for the bears they've saved because they cannot be put back into the wild because they cannot fend for themselves. Their teeth have been pulled, nails too and they do not know how to hunt even if they had teeth and nails. WSOS needs all the donations they can get to continue to care for these saved bears for life. Also to continue their undercover work with the law officials to catch the poachers who are still killing moms and stealing and selling the cubs. WSOS takes those cubs in. If they can be returned to the wild they are but most cannot and have and the cubs they continue to save for the rest of their lives. Frankie

    • salsa-dancing profile image

      Salsa Dancing 4 years ago

      Thanks for sharing this important cause, Frankster!

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      anonymous 3 years ago

      I really admire people like this giving to the animal rights their lifes. I'll spread a word for them and I'd love to know if delivers purchase merchandising in Europe. Thank you for exist!!

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