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The Bear Orphan Station

Three-stage programme for returning animals to the wild

It is our objective to return young orphaned bears to freedom latest after their second hibernation. In order to help them take this important step, a graduated program that is adapted to special needs of every single bear for returning them to the wild is required. FOUR PAWS experts carry out the plan in three stages:


  • Quarantine: When a young orphan bear comes to our camp, it is first of all quarantined for 3 - 10 days, when it can be examined and observed while the team waits for the veterinarian's examination report.

  • Natural environment: After receiving an examination report showing no findings and a short time of observation in the quarantine station, the bear moves to a large, natural enclosure. There the bear cub can do everything it would naturally do, from climbing to digging, to searching for food, to playing with other bears, to hiding in caves and sleeping.

  • Training: The FOUR PAWS orphan bear keeper goes, if necessary, on excursions for several days with the cubs or he only focuses on monitoring the bears, depending on the situation. The training program follows strict rules and regulations to ensure that the young bears do not become accustomed to humans; they are allowed to have only one contact person (who is absolutely forbidden to speak and may never feed the animals from their hands).


This is the only way to guarantee the bears' future freedom. Outfitted with a transmitter allowing FOUR PAWS to monitor them, the bears are released into the wild latest after their second hibernation. This would be around the time when the bears' mothers would naturally leave them, and when the young animals would be ready to begin their own, independent lives.