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Amazing news! According to Four Paws, the Albanian Ministry of Tourism and Environment has finally decided to confiscate the animals of the Safari Park Zoo Fier. The zoo will now be closed and a number of animals relocated to other sites.
After the work of an anonymous photographer found its way online and into the news, the true depth of the plight of these animals got the attention of people who could do something about it. There are big cats with eye infections, a bear who has lost a leg, and a number of other animals kept in squalid, unsanitary conditions without any medical care. Vets have reported that Fier showed some of the worst conditions ever seen in a zoo, while visitors looked on at these injured and neglected animals in dismay. Visitor Esben Lyager left this review: “Lions are living in 10 square meters. One of them with an open wound in its eye, where flies were nesting. The wolf has one square meter. The bear was also wounded. Half the cages were empty, I guess the other animals had died.”
Four Paws, which has been investigating the conditions at the zoo since 2015, is on-site supporting the authorities after the announcement of the confiscation. They are preparing for the safe and successful rescue of these suffering animals to get them the medical care and comfort they need. Temporary enclosures are being put up for the animals so they can be made as comfortable as possible as this rescue takes place.
Director of Four Paws’ wild animals department Ioana Dungler said: “An international team of veterinarians will supervise the entire evacuation. This mission is extremely delicate, and we hope to get all animals out of this horrible zoo unhurt. For safety reasons we are unfortunately unable to provide any concrete information on the time of the evacuation, but it will take place in the next few days.”
There is an incredible amount of work now for all involved. These animals need relocating to safer, healthier environments. They will need medical care and ongoing rehabilitation for the psychological and physical ordeals they have been put through. Four Paws has fought for a long time to get these animals to safety. They are dedicated and will do everything they can to support these animals and help them get well again. If you are able to help by donating or would like to be kept up to date with this incredible rescue, please head over to their Facebook page.
Image Source: Four Paws