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Viktor Janukowitsch leaves five bears behind


In his luxurious winter residence in the Ukrainian Carpathians, the ex-president also kept bears. The FOUR PAWS team is now administering first care of the animals left behind.  


The discharged Ukrainian president, Viktor Janukowitsch, does not only leave a private zoo on his ostentatious estate near Kiev. In his luxurious winter residence 180 km south of Lviv, near the village Huta, he leaves animals too; aside from boars, horses and pheasants there are also five bears, including three bear cubs.


Local animal welfare organisations asked FOUR PAWS for help. Currently the animals, which are in a relatively good condition considering the circumstances, are still being taken care of by the former employees of Janukowitsch. FOUR PAWS bear expert Carsten Hertwig, who coordinates the first care of the bears says, “This can change quickly. It is to be feared that the bears will be sold, especially the bear cubs who are in danger of ending up in an unsuitable environment again.”


The bears, whose place of origin is still unclear, were kept in cages that were far too small. A male bear was kept in one cage, while another one contained a female bear with her three cubs.


Today, a FOUR PAWS emergency rescue team including bear expert Annika Luerssen will get an idea of the circumstances and the condition of the bears. They will provide them with food and also try to find a long-term solution for the wild animals.