Starving lions beaten with metal rods found in abandoned Russian hotel used to attract tourists

Two starving lions found in an abandoned Russian hotel continue to fight for their lives after they were discovered in two cramped cages. Both an 18-month-old lion and lioness had been purchased on the black market and were used to attract tourists to the hotel located in the Ramenskoye district of Moscow.

According to Mail Online,  Kirill Babenko, the owner of the hotel fled to India “several weeks prior” to avoid prosecution, leaving the two lions to die. The cats had been routinely beaten with metal rods and lived in cages in Babenko’s bedrooms.  Hotel guests could take photos with the cubs, and “trainers” would make the cats obey by beating them. Their coats were in terrible condition and both had scars over their bodies. When discovered, the animals were stated to be “moaning and groaning from hunger.”

Volunteers rescuing the animals described how weak the cats were – even incapable of moving towards food. Both had been left only old bones the cats tried to gnaw. Rumors circulated that local teenagers had secretly been sneaking into the hotel and feeding the cats “meat pies and spam.” When the kids went to volunteers, members of the rescue community informed local prosecutors; an investigation was immediately launched. 

Rescue worked Ildar Khantemirov warned about buying wild animals on the black market:

“This is a clear consequence of an utterly cruel black market of wild animals. I don’t think they will ever be able to get back to the wild… I know that a three month old African lion cub can be bought for as little as 140,000 roubles. ($2,400 U.S.) The buyer will not be given any documents; he or she will just receive a carrier bag with a lion cub inside.”

It is not known if the two cats will survive, but if they do, their rehabilitation will take months for them to recover. The hotel owner has not responded to any requests for comments.

(Starving lions photos via freezeshots of YouTube video and Mail Online)

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Check out the video of the rescue: (Although you may not understand the language, the tragic message rings clear)




Heartbreaking as beached yearling whale blinked watching the humans who couldn’t help

A beached yearling humpback whale had to be humanely euthanized on Saturday in Australia despite heroic efforts by a team of volunteers trying their best to save him. For more than a day, the juvenile remained beached on the NSW Mid North Coast. Sadly, as his health deteriorated and the rough seas precluded all extraordinary rescue plans, the whale blinked his eyes and weakly moved its flippers, reported the Sydney Morning Herald.

“It’s been a very, very difficult afternoon for everybody involved,” marine rescue organization Orcca vice-president Shona Lorigan said from Sawtell Beach, south of Coffs Harbour, on Saturday.

The whale first beached himself on shore Friday night. No one had any explanation as to how the young whale ended up on the beach, but some environmental experts have suggested his inexperience on his first solo migration may have been a factor. Experts had been monitoring the whale’s health as the seas continued to get rougher and rougher. It wasn’t expected that rescuers would be able to launch a boat to try and tow him out into the sea again until Monday, but the animal’s suffering seemed to be escalating as each hour passed.

“Mother nature’s not helped us today; the waves are getting bigger as I watch,” Lorigan stated. “We really had to think of the welfare of the whale, and we didn’t want it to suffer any longer.”

Even though volunteers had continued to pour buckets of water on top of him and covered his skin with material to keep him wet, his inactivity had caused the whale too much pain. On Monday, his body will be removed from the beach, and he will be buried.

Rest in peace sweet freed animal. Nature can be very cruel.

(Photos screenshots via Twitter Environment + Heritage)

A short video showing volunteers trying to save the juvenile whale can be viewed here.

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Read about Pinto left for hours alone on the side of the road .

State officials kill mother bear after she ‘scratched’ a woman along forest trail

Two six-month-old cubs will now have to survive on their own after officials from the Department of Energy & Environmental Protection (DEEP) euthanized the mother bear after an incident involving a woman walking her dog along a trail in the Simsbury Town Forest Park in Connecticut.

According to WtnhNews, a 41-year-old woman had been walking on a trail Wednesday afternoon with her Labrador retriever when she came around a corner and encountered a bear with her cubs. The bear became scared, but the woman did what she was supposed to and shouted to scare the bear off. As the bear attempted to escape, it ran past the woman, but not without scratching the back of the woman’s legs. The woman did not require any medical attention. Unfortunately the tragic fate of the bear had just been sealed.

Dennis Schain, spokesperson for the DEEP stated the bear was killed shortly after the incident. The mother bear had a tracking collar enabling officials to find her and euthanize her. Animal advocates are calling this a “tragedy.” In a statement reported by, Annie Hornish, Connecticut Senior State Director for the Humane Society of the United States wrote:

“It’s a tragedy that this mother bear was killed, and even more heartbreaking is that her young cubs, who would have relied on their mother up to 18 months, will now likely die from predation or starvation. Black bears are highly sentient and family oriented creatures, who are greatly valued by most Americans. We must endeavor to better co-adapt to living with them and mindfully recreate in their last remaining habitats.”

DEEP says the bear was euthanized to follow a policy where protocol demands when a bear exhibits aggressive behavior, it is deemed a public safety hazard. Perhaps what really makes this a tragic call by the DEEP, is the woman involved declined medical treatment at the scene and did not require any emergency followup at a hospital. Apparently the startled bear was killed because she was protecting her cubs when faced with a dog.

Rest in peace mother bear; we can only hope your cubs survive.

(Photo of mother bear via screenshot Patch)

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Dog died after allegedly being beaten with a board

Heartbreaking story of dog beaten with a board. 


Heartless hunters check this out: Pregnant deer shot through head with crossbow

UPDATE: The deer was captured, sedated and the arrow had made hole in her neck and a gash through her palate; wildlife experts stated she seemed “reasonably unshaken.” The wound was cleaned and antibiotics administered. It is hoped the wound does not become infected. Residents in the area are asked to keep an eye on her. And a message to the heartless hunter who did this to a defenseless pregnant deer:

“We’d like you to turn yourself in, own up to your mistake and face the consequences.”

Vancouver Island resident, Heather Bertrand had been accustomed to seeing a pregnant deer quietly roaming about her yard in the Maple Bay area. We all know how deer are just curious and gentle, and most people just like to observe the wild creatures silently nibbling on tasty morsels wherever they might be found. And all was well with the pregnant doe; that is until Heather came home on Tuesday evening and saw the deer with an arrow through her head.

According to Cbc.caNews, Heather immediately called conservation officers to help, but the animal had been scared and ran away before she could be helped. The story, however was not over. On Wednesday morning, Heather was shocked:

“This morning when I got up … she jumped up and she had her fawn with her. She had had a fawn during the night,” said Bertrand.

Conservation officers said she had been shot through the neck and face with a crossbow.

“We’re quite frustrated with the fact that someone would do this,” stated Officer Scott Norris, adding hunting is illegal in the area. “It’s not a very humane way to hunt an animal.”

At this time, the deer doesn’t seem to be suffering, however how can she not feel intense pain? The wildlife staff are hoping to sedate the mother deer and remove the arrow – hoping to rejoin her with her baby. At this time, the baby is too young to survive alone. According to wildlife officials, if the baby is hungry or scared without her mom, it is more than likely she will vocalize – at which time it is hoped rescuers can come to its aid.

It is not known who did this heinous deed. The penalty for illegal hunting under the wildlife act is a minimum fine of $345; the fine could be higher if the act is prosecuted.

Let’s hope the mother deer can be helped.

(Photo of pregnant deer screenshot via Heather Bertrand)

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Rescued cow cries for her baby after he is left behind – watch the emotional reunion here.

Man arrested: Disturbing photo of golfer holding two dead ducks

A Fayette County man is facing animal cruelty charges after photos had been circulating on social media showing a golfer holding two dead ducks at Duck Hollow Golf Course in Uniontown, Pennsylvania. According to CbsPittsburgh,  state police filed charges against Josh Jenkins-Howenstein, also known as “Bubbie” Jenkins, of Uniontown.

The incident happened on Saturday morning after a golf cart struck and killed the two ducks; not just two random ducks who had wandered onto the golf course. These two white ducks had been closely bonded and often followed golfers around while playing the course:

“They were residents of the golf course, and they were well-known throughout the golf course community,” stated State Trooper  Robert Broadwater.

When a photo appeared with a golfer holding up the two ducks, the manager of the golf course referred the disturbing situation to the police. The person who took the photo has since stated he and his family have been receiving death threats, and even though he admitted to having taken the photo, he was not the person who killed the ducks. By the time he found them, the ducks were already dead. That golfer has since been “cleared of any wrongdoing.” He now regrets ever have taken the photo.

“We had two ducks. The ducks and all of the wildlife are a part of what makes Duck Hollow a special place,” stated one of the golf course officials.

What a sad day for our wildlife when they are mowed down by an alleged abusive person. Animal cruelty charges are pending.

Rest in peace wildlife. We are sorry that humans let you down.

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(Photos via screenshots CbsPittsburgh)

Check out the story of little heartbroken little Miss Poppy when she is reunited with her favorite human after months.




Connecticut man charged with intentionally running over family of geese with his truck

In Southington, Connecticut, a 68-year-old man faces animal cruelty charges after several eyewitnesses told authorities he intentionally ran over a family of geese with his pickup truck as they crossed the road.  Thomas Guerrette had been operating his vehicle on Friday when he hit the animals- killing two goslings and severely injuring a third baby that had to be humanely euthanized. Police issued a misdemeanor summons charging him with cruelty to animals.

According to FoxNews, Guerrette denies the charges and told police he had taken his eyes off the road for a few moments and when he looked ahead, he saw the geese in front of him. He stated he swerved to try and avoid them. Witnesses, however paint a different story. One person stated Guerrette initially slowed down, but then accelerated before hitting the geese. Another witness observed that Guerrette never braked his vehicle to avoid hitting the birds. The Southington Patch reports the incident occurred on Welch Road near Mount Vernon Road.

Canada geese are protected from hunting and capture outside of designated hunting seasons in the United States by the Migratory Bird Treaty Act, and in Canada under the Migratory Birds Convention Act.

(Photo via screen shot Southington Patch)

Guerrette is scheduled to appear in court on June 12.

Read about a similar incident that happened in Central Islip, New York a few weeks ago.

Read about the brave kitten who vets said would never walk again. 


$6,000 reward offered for information on deaths of drowned coyote puppies

In Barrington, Illinois, seven coyote puppies were found in the Spring Creek Valley Forest Preserve on May 11. A $6,000 reward has been offered by the Humane Society, the Illinois Department of Natural Resources and the Flint Creek Wildlife Rehabilitation for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the person(s) responsible for the heinous deed. Six of the puppies had been beaten, abused and drowned; one coyote puppy survived and is currently being treated.

According to a press release from the Flint Creek Wildlife Rehabilitation, the pups were found drowned in a bucket near Penny Road Pond; the two-week-old surviving pup also suffered a broken leg. Last week the puppy underwent surgery where veterinarians inserted pins to straighten out his tibia. It is hoped the puppy will recover and be able to be released back into the wild when he is older.

“Anyone who could so callously maim and kill defenseless coyote pups and then toss them away like trash is a danger not only to animals but to the community at large,” stated Marc Ayers, the Illinois state director of the Humane Society of the United States.

According to the Illinois Department of Natural Resources, the person who killed the pups more than likely took the helpless babies from their den. The offender could face charges of illegal possession of wildlife and misdemeanor or felony animal cruelty. According to WgnNews, this

  “wasn’t the act of a hunter hunting an adult coyote.”

Forest Preserves Communications Director Lambrini Lukidis filled in more details about the heinous deed. The Chicago Tribune  reported a police officer had been called after a fisherman noticed a burlap bag in the water.  When the man pulled it ashore, he found seven coyote puppies inside and called police. It is not known how long the pups had been in the water, but all had been alive when thrown into  the water. A policeman noticed the one surviving pup was still alive and rushed him to an area veterinarian where he was later transferred to the wildlife rehabilitation center.

Anyone with information about the case is asked to call the Department of Natural Resources at 1-877-236-7529.

Read the previous article here.

(Submitted photos for $6,000 reward via the Flint Creek Wildlife Rehabilitation)

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It’s baby rabbit season. Learn how to spot their nests.

Baby bobcat was euthanized despite public outcry to send her to wildlife preserve

In Springfield, Missouri, a three-week-old bobcat kitten was euthanized on Wednesday despite the public’s outcry to spare the animal’s life and send her to a preserve where she would have been raised, weaned and eventually freed out into the forest to live her life. According to the News Leader,  authorities insisted state law stated wild animals cannot be quarantined like domestic pets, should there be a concern about rabies.

The tiny bobcat’s story became news one week ago when a property owner had been bulldozing his property and found the kitten. The man called the Missouri Conservation Department, who told him to call Georgia Lafita, a certified wildlife rehabilitator. Georgia said she would be glad to care for the kitten for 12-weeks, until it could be weaned and then freed back into the wild. Another bobcat at the facility could teach the little one how to hunt. The man brought the kitten to Georgia’s home, but not before he reached into the crate and the tiny frightened kitten bit him on his finger in self-defense. Although she only had four teeth, the injury broke the skin. It was suggested the man consult a physician about the bite. Sadly, that one tiny bite was the beginning of the end for an innocent, wild creature.

Georgia named the kitten Lamia and wouldn’t let anyone else hold her as she was being bottle-fed; taking no chances the kitten would have a human imprint which would have made her a victim of hunting in the years to come. The  Springfield-Greene County Health Department, however had other ideas and insisted the kitten be euthanized and her severed head sent to state officials in Jefferson City to be tested for rabies.

“I’m crushed. That cat is perfectly healthy. Her eyes are clear. She has lots of energy, shows no signs of illness at all,” Georgia told the News-Leader when they visited her home on Tuesday.

On Wednesday morning a conservation agent removed the kitten from Georgia’s home. She had fed the kitten her final bottle before she was whisked away forever. Big Cat Rescue had offered to take the kitten and pay for all the rabies shots the man needed – just in case. That didn’t work out, however since the man had recently undergone heart surgery.

And as every animal advocate mourns the death of an innocent wild animal baby, Georgia wants to remind everyone not to “handle wildlife. ” Should the situation of wounded wildlife come into someone’s purview, call a specialist – preferably a professional from a licensed wildlife sanctuary to help.

Rest in peace little Lamia. We are so sorry that humans let you down.

Photo of baby bobcat was euthanized via Big Cat Rescue.

Read the baby bobcat’s original story here.

Read about the dog who had been dead and  curled up in his dog house – no one ever checked on him.Dog curled up and died in dog house

3-week-old abandoned bobcat slated to be euthanized by Springfield health department

A Missouri woman, certified in wildlife rehabilitation, can’t stop crying after the local health department told her they will be seizing a three-week-old baby bobcat on Wednesday to euthanize her and then send her  severed head to Jefferson City to be tested for rabies. Georgia Lafita, however is distraught:

“I’m crushed. That cat is perfectly healthy. Her eyes are clear. She has lots of energy, shows no signs of illness at all,” Georgia told the News-Leader when they visited her home on Tuesday.

The tiny bobcat’s story became news just one week ago when a property owner had been bulldozing his property and found the kitten. The man called the Missouri Conservation Department who told him to call Georgia who said she would be glad to care for the kitten until it could be weaned and then freed back into the wild. Another bobcat at the facility could teach the little one how to hunt. The man brought the kitten to Georgia’s home, but not before he reached into the crate and the tiny frightened kitten bit him in self-defense. Although she only had four teeth, the injury broke the skin. It was suggested the man consult a physician about the bite.

Meanwhile, Georgia has quarantined the kitten away from all other animals at the refuge, bottle feeds the baby and doesn’t allow anyone else to touch her  – as not to imprint on any human which could easily jeopardize her survival when eventually released out in the wild. As is done with any domestic animal who has bitten a human, they are kept in quarantine and under observation for ten days. If, at the end of that time, there are no symptoms, it is assumed the animal is rabies free. The ten day quarantine period still allows enough time for the person bitten to receive preventive care.

According to the Springfield-Green County Health Department, however quarantining the kitten is not an option because  enough scientific research has not been done on wild animals. Kathryn Wall, spokesperson for the health department, reiterated that had the kitten been a domestic breed, a quarantine would have been sufficient; not so for the tiny bobcat Georgia has named Lamia.

Big Cat Rescue located in Tampa, Florida has volunteered their services. On Wednesday morning, the organization posted the news on their Facebook page:

“The only humane solution is for the man who was bitten to take the rabies shots. It’s a couple thousand dollars, and is willing to pay for them, if the bobcat kitten’s life can be spared. We’ve reached out to both the Springfield Health Dept. and the rehabber with this offer. We will keep you posted.”

(Photo of baby bobcat is not the subject kitten. Photo via Big Cat Rescue)

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Read about the more cats you rescue, the more money you make from this company.

Two South Carolina men force baby alligator to gulp beer

In Jasper County, South Carolina, two men will face the harassment of wildlife charge after forcing a baby alligator to drink beer and posting the photos and video on social media. According to a news release from the South Carolina Department of Natuaral Resources, Joseph Andrew Floyd Jr., 20, and Zachary Lloyd Brown, 21 of Ridgeland, picked up the alligator after spotting it crossing the road. They then held it in the flatbed of their truck and poured beer into its mouth; taking photos to post on social media.


“Wildlife conservation is a big part of what SCDNR officers do each day,” SCDNR 1st Sgt. Earl Pope said. “This case is a good example of why we strive to educate people about wildlife in hopes that they will respect it.”

In one of the photos, the alligator’s neck is squeezed and a beer can is pressed against its snout. The text on the photo says “Gator Shotgun.”
Other photos show beer being dripped into its mouth while its neck is held firmly between the man’s hands. One more disturbing picture shows smoke being blown onto the face of the gator.

SCDNR is filing the misdemeanor charge of harassing wildlife through the state’s alligator management legislation (Article 5, Section 50-15-500, Subsection C). If found guilty the men face a $300 fine. The judge who oversees the case in court will determine the men’s final punishment.

Floyd Jr. stated they released the alligator and watched it swim away. In South Carolina, it’s illegal to feed an alligator or to attempt to lure it with food. It is illegal to hunt or take alligators without a permit.

(Photos of baby alligator forced to drink beer via Facebook photos)

The public is asked to report any and all criminal activity interfering with the lives of wildlife. Any incident should be reported to  1-800-922-5431.

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