Misha and Dasha, two brown bears, were imprisoned in a small cage at a restaurant for ten years. They worked as tourist attractions and spent their days pacing back and forth in an attempt to pass the time.
They would frequently bash their heads against the bars or climb the bars in an attempt to infuse some excitement into their life.
To make this situation worse, their cage was situated on a riverbed, and it frequently flooded. The water had once risen so high that the unfortunate bears were on the verge of drowning.
“A few years ago, the river overflowed, and the bears were almost drowned,” Lis Key, International Animal Rescue’s PR and communications manager, told The Dodo. “As you can see from the rescue photographs, the rescue crew had to cut through the cages to free them, so they must have been imprisoned and in grave danger of drowning when the river overflowed.”
International Animal Rescue (IAR) has been trying to save these two bears for years.
Finally, in November 2017, IAR and the Foundation for the Preservation of Wildlife and Cultural Assets (FPWC) were able to persuade the restaurant owners to relinquish control of the bears to them.
The two bears were liberated when the IAR rescue crew hacked through the metal cage’s bars. They tranquilized the bears and transported them to their mountain refuge, where they would be free to wander and follow their natural inclinations.
Misha and Dasha went into a cave to hibernate for the winter soon after arriving at the refuge. They weren’t alone when they first appeared in spring of 2018. Dasha had successfully given birth to two healthy and happy cubs.