Meet Mojo the Muntjac

by Dr. Jackie Gai, PAWS Veterinarian


One of the shyest and least known residents at the Galt sanctuary is Mojo, an Indian (or Common) muntjac. Mojo arrived in the summer of 2007, an illegal pet confiscated by a nearby county animal control agency. Mojo is estimated to be about 11 years old.



Wild muntjac live in forests and dense vegetation in many parts of Asia where they are hunted for their flesh and skin, and killed as "nuisances" due to their appetite for eating tree bark. Muntjac are sold in the U.S. in the exotic pet trade for $750 - $1500.


In the early 18th century, exotic Reeve's muntjac were released into England for hunting. This invasive population is expanding, and sadly, many are killed every year by hunters, hit by cars, and again, killed as nuisances for their love of eating rosebuds and other flowers.


These dainty deer are only 18-20 inches tall and weigh 15-25 pounds. Muntjac have a delicate digestive system, eating grasses, leaves, and tender shoots in the wild. Our dedicated keepers feed Mojo a balanced mixture of hay, pellets, vegetables, and hand-selected tender, leafy branches. Also known as the "barking deer", muntjac are constantly alert for predators and emit a loud, piercing bark when they feel threatened. Their constant state of vigilance and special dietary requirements make them difficult to care for properly, and they are illegal to own in most states without a permit.


Mojo spends his days grazing in his grassy enclosure, nibbling on tender willow branches, and lying in the sunny grass or under the shade of his trees. At night, he sleeps in his own cozy, straw-bedded shelter. Skittish and suspicious when he first came to PAWS, now he is friendly and inquisitive and looks forward to visits from the keepers to see what delicious leaves and branches they bring.


To adopt Mojo, click here 


For Nevada Residents: Act Now To Help Prohibit Private Possession of Dangerous Wild Animals


Nevada Senator Michael Roberson has introduced SB245, a state bill that would prohibit the keeping of dangerous wild animals as pets. This bill follows the escape of two chimpanzees who ran through a Las Vegas area neighborhood last year, resulting in the death of one chimp.


SB245 will prohibit the future possession of dangerous wild animals including big cats, bears, primates, alligators, and some species of venomous snakes. Current owners will be allowed to keep the animals they now have, but breeding and the acquisition of more dangerous wild animals will be forbidden. The bill exempts accredited zoos, wildlife sanctuaries, research and educational facilities, casinos and circuses.


When people keep wild animals as pets, the animals always suffer. Once-cute babies grow into dangerous and unmanageable adults, who typically are relegated to a life of misery in small, barren enclosures for the rest of their lives. Many are sent to roadside zoos or even canned hunts, in which hunters pay to shoot these defenseless animals at close range.


The private ownership of dangerous wild animals also constitutes a threat to public safety. Since 1990, there have been more than 700 incidents involving captive big cats, bears and primates nationwide, resulting in 27 human deaths (including four children) and more than 550 injuries. Often, the animals are put to death as a result of these incidents.


How you can help


SB245 will be heard in the Senate Committee on Natural Resources on Thursday, March 28, at 1:30 p.m. (Room 2144 in the Legislative Building, 401 S. Carson St., Carson City). If you are a Nevada resident, you can take the following actions to help move this important bill forward, but you must do so by Thursday. If you do not live in Nevada and want to help, please spread the word to friends and family who may live in Nevada and urge them to take action. You can also send an email to Nevada senators.


Click here for background information, sample letters, addresses and email links. 



February 1988: Pat Derby (left) with friend Amanda Blake (Miss Kitty from Gunsmoke).
Pat Derby: "A Celebration of Her Life"
Friday, March 29, 2013 | Crest Theatre, Sacramento
Please remember to RSVP if you plan to attend this Friday's event in Pat's honor. Click here for details.
Ed Stewart, and the entire PAWS family, wish to thank everyone who has sent emails, letters of condolences, and donated to PAWS in Pat's memory. Pat would be so proud, and so grateful. We find this outpouring of love to be quite overwhelming. Thank you!
Ruth the Eland | In Memoriam
On March 7th, we lost our beloved Eland, Ruth, to an adrenal gland tumor that is often seen in elderly bovines. Ruth came to PAWS in 1997, saved from a trophy hunting ranch in Nevada, along with a large herd of Scimitar-Horned oryx. She thrived on a 17-acre pasture amongst the oryx herd, and several emu. She was intelligent, inquisitive, and friendly, always approaching and greeting her keepers to eat the apples they brought. She was doted over, and provided special vitamins, glucosamine, and medications for arthritis.
Like many of the animals who come to PAWS, Ruth's exact age was not known but she was estimated to be at least 23 years old. The most charismatic resident of the Amanda Blake Memorial Wildlife Refuge, her soft eyes and gentle presence will be greatly missed and will always remain in our hearts.
All donations received will be used for the care of the herd of Scimitar-Horned Oryx living at the Amanda Blake Memorial Wildlife Refuge. Ruth had lived with them her entire life.

March News Updates:


Oregon Zoo Buys Elephants From Have Trunk Will Travel


The Oregon Zoo was slammed with a major controversy in December, when a Seattle newspaper revealed that the disreputable entertainment company Have Trunk Will Travel owned the zoo's newborn elephant Lily. In 2005, Have Trunk Will Travel loaned its bull elephant, Tusko, to the zoo for breeding, in exchange for ownership of up to six resulting offspring, including Lily. The company, which rents out elephants for circuses, rides and film shoots, was caught on video striking elephants with bullhooks, including a calf, and using an electric shock device during training.


Last month, the Oregon Zoo announced that it would buy both Lily and Tusko from Have Trunk Will Travel for $400,000, a move that was meant to quell public concern. While the zoo did the right thing by purchasing both elephants and ensuring they are not used in circuses or other types of entertainment, it does not excuse the Oregon Zoo's continued affiliation with circuses and companies that exploit elephants for profit.


Given the public's outrage at the idea that Lily could be sent to a life performing tricks in circuses and giving rides, PAWS hopes the Oregon Zoo has learned an important lesson: The public does not want to see elephants sent from zoos to a life in the circus.


PAWS co-founder Pat Derby, who spoke vigorously against the ties that many zoos have with circuses, stated in a December PAWS news release:


"Working with circuses and with companies like Have Trunk Will Travel undermines zoos' claims to be putting the best interests of elephants first. If zoos are serious about elephant welfare, they must sever all ties with circuses and companies that use elephants purely for entertainment. An elephant is not a commodity to be traded and sold for profit."


Los Angeles Circus Ordinance Still Pending


An ordinance that would ban elephants in circuses and use of the bullhook is still pending in Los Angeles. PAWS is playing a key role in promoting the passage of this important measure. If enacted, Los Angeles would be the largest U.S. city with such a ban, sending a powerful message to other cities and counties across the nation that it's time to end the use of elephants and other exotics animals in circuses. With enough momentum, we can then pass the federal Traveling Exotic Animal Protection Act (TEAPA), on which PAWS has a leadership role.

Thank You | PAWS' Wish List Donatons
We're overwhelmed with the response we've received to our Wish List. Deliveries seem to arrive every day and it's been both exciting, and fun, for the office staff to open these surprise packages. Supplies arriving at our Galt sanctuary are delivered to San Andreas twice a week and everyone at ARK 2000 now eagerly awaits the arrival of PAWS' blue van to see what new surprise is contained inside.
Thank you to everyone who has been so generous!

As of March 26, 2013, we have received the following, and we sincerely thank everyone who has been so generous. Some items have arrived as anonymous, so we may not be able to thank you properly, but you know who you are! Please remember to check "this is a gift" for each item on your order and type in your name, address and email so we can thank you! Items from Amazon's many vendors may be shipped separately so it's important that you designate each item in your order as a gift. A drop down box will open, allowing you to include your name and your email so we can thank you properly.


Anonymous Gifts: (When a donor does not designate each purchase as a "gift", and include their name and email, Amazon ships the item(s) to us as anonymous.) 1 24-inch heavy-duty push broom for the elephant barns; 20 lbs. Psyllium for the elephants; 1 popcorn air popper; 1 order "Banker Boxes" storage boxes for Galt office; 9 boxes nitrile gloves for use at ARK 2000 and in Galt (1 sm 4 med, 4 lg); 2 boxes Frosted Flakes for the elephants; 1 box AA batteries for ARK 2000; 5 lbs Psyllium for the elephants; 1 box 33 gal trash bags for Galt sanctuary; 1 box raisins, Galt sanctuary; 1 bottle hand sanitizer, elephant barns; 1 case paper towels, Galt sanctuary; 1 24-inch heavy duty push broom, elephant barns; 2 Xacto Knife Handles, elephant barns; 2 bottles Renal essentials for tigers; 2 gallons Chlorhexidine for vet clinics; 2 50-lb. containers of Psyllium; 1 box heavy duty trash bags.


Thank you to the following individuals who have donated - Pamela Calvert: Veterinary Heart Monitor for our vet clinic. Heidi Oestreicher: 1 bottle renal essentials for tigers, 1 box window envelopes for Galt office, 1 box frosted flakes for elephants, 1 set Motorola walkie talkie radios for the elephant keepers. Peg and Dennis D. Freeman: 1 box 33 gal. trash bags sent to tiger area. George Gary Russell: 1 scoop shovel for the elephant barn. Marcia Stephens: frosted flakes for the elephants. Lonnie Jones: 1 scoop shovel for the elephant barn. Barbara Kouns: 1 scoop shovel for the elephant barn. Toni Denicola (TLC Primate Sanctuary): 100' hose for the elephant barn. Don L. Stockett: 1 scoop shovel for the elephant barn. Beverly Whitaker: Eight 50-lb bags Mazuri elephant pellets. Mikki McBride: Xacto Handle for elephant barns. Carol Haft: 1 Gallon Red Cell for elephants. Karen Roberts: HP Photosmart printer for the vet clinic ARK 2000. Judy Herring: 1 box 33 gal. trash bags for the elephant barns. Thomas C. Lyon: popcorn popper for ARK 2000 elephants; 1 bottle renal essentials for the tigers. Cara McAlister: 1 set Motorola walkie talkie radios for the elephant keepers. Linda McNall: 10 lbs Vionate; 1 bottle renal essentials for the tigers. Linda Bronfman: 1 box hanging file folders for the Galt office; 1 box 9x12 clasp envelopes, Galt office. Nancy Walters: 2 gallons Red Cell for the elephants; 2 boxes raisins sent to ARK 2000. Christine E. Fraser: wheat germ oil, Galt sanctuary. Diann Ranum: 50 lb. bag popcorn kernels, ARK 2000 and Galt sanctuaries. Theresa and Ben Robinson: HP Photosmart printer, vet clinic in Galt, 1 bag Innova dog food, bears; 3 bags of Mazuri elephant pellets. Barbara Garrett: 1 set Motorola walkie talkie radios, elephant keepers. Christine E. Fraser: 2 bottles renal essentials for tigers; 1 box raisins for Galt sanctuary. Barbara Couch: 1 set Motorola walkie talkie radios, tiger keepers. Amanda Leong: 1 set Motorola walkie talkie radios, tiger and bear keepers; Exotic Animal Formulary book, vet clinic. Beverly Whitaker: 9 bags Mazuri elephant pellets. Mary Nelson: 3 bottles of Renal Essentials. Linda Faso: Apple IPAD for ARK 2000. Alyssa Altshuler: 1 bottle Renal Essentials, 1 bottle Cosequin DS, 1 box hanging file folders.


Other Ways You Can Help
Adopt A PAWS Animal
If you would like to help our animals, one of the best ways is to become an "adoptive parent," or give a PAWS adoption as a gift to an animal lover in your life. PAWS adoptions are symbolic adoptions only. No animal will be sent!
PAWS Partnerships

Help us change the life of a victim of captivity by becoming a PAWS Partner.

PAWS partnerships help support our sanctuary operations and the day-to-day care of the animals.

Estates/Planned Giving
You can help us make sure captive wildlife in need of shelter will always have a PAWS sanctuary to call home!
Donate To PAWS
Three ways to give and every donation matters.
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P. O. Box 849, Galt, CA 95632
(209) 745-2606