Misha and Dasha had spent their entire lives entertaining diners at a riverside restaurant in Armenia, chained to rusting welded cages. However, after ten years in captivity, they have been rescued and will now live in a mountain sanctuary. This rescue mission was made possible by generous donations. Unfortunately, Misha and Dasha are not the only bears in Armenia who are kept in cages for the entertainment of restaurant and shop guests.
A charity has warned that hundreds of other bears are in a similar predicament and are in desperate need of assistance. Misha and Dasha, two brown bears, spent ten years locked in a tiny cage inside an Armenian restaurant, where they were displayed for tourists. They led a monotonous existence, pacing back and forth in their enclosure, desperately seeking ways to pass the time.
They would frequently bash their heads on the bars or climb them in an attempt to find some type of entertainment. Their position was exacerbated by the cage’s location on the riverbed, which meant that it frequently flooded. The water levels climbed so high at one point that the bears were almost drowned.
“A few years ago, the river flooded and the bears almost drowned,” International Animal Rescue’s Lis Key told The Dodo. “As you can see from the rescue photos, the rescue team had to cut through the cages to release them, so they must have been trapped when the river flooded and in serious danger of drowning.”
The restaurant owners were persuaded to give up custody of Misha and Dasha after enormous efforts by both the International Animal Rescue (IAR) and the Foundation for the Preservation of Wildlife and Cultural Assets. The two brown bears were then moved to the care of these groups, where they will be given a better life and better living conditions. These two wonderful critters have finally been set free thanks to the tireless efforts of these animal enthusiasts!