A Note of Thanks From Ed Stewart

Ed Stewart
I am very grateful for the outpouring of concern expressed by our friends and colleagues during the recent wildfire that burned areas of Calaveras and Amador counties. The ARK 2000 sanctuary is situated in Calaveras County. The sanctuary was never under an evacuation order, but we were well prepared in case the fire came close. The animals and staff at ARK 2000 remained safe and calm, as the fire passed miles away.

Ensuring the health, safety and welfare of our animals is always our priority. PAWS has an emergency plan on file with Cal Fire and the California Department of Fish & Wildlife, and we were in regular contact with local fire officials to monitor the situation and plan accordingly. Every animal-holding facility has to be prepared for fire, floods, earthquakes (no, ARK 2000 is not located anywhere near the San Andreas fault line), hurricanes and other natural disasters particular to their area. The key is to be prepared. 

The ARK 2000 sanctuary is located on rolling grassland dotted with oak trees, unlike the steep canyons and pine forests found in the areas where the fire burned out of control. The late Pat Derby and I purchased this property because it could be defended against fire, even in the face of drought. We both wanted the rescued and retired animals we care for to experience a more natural environment, and that is what we have achieved. Of course, this comes with responsibilities that tiny, circus-type facilities don't have to consider, and we take those very seriously. Each year we strive to improve upon our already high level of fire preparedness, investing a substantial amount of funds into keeping the animals and staff as safe as possible in this natural environment. (Read more about PAWS' fire preparedness here.)

Sanctuary Manager Brian Busta and I cannot say enough about the dedication and commitment our staff displayed during this difficult time, showing up to work every day even though some of them had been evacuated from their homes or suffered their own devastating losses.

PAWS eagerly engaged with our community to assist in animal rescue and relief efforts in the aftermath of the fire. Our veterinarian, Dr. Jackie Gai, has visited animal shelters and evacuation centers, providing food, medical care and simple necessities such as dog leashes. (Read Dr. Gai's report below.)

I want to thank all of our supporters who offered their help and kind thoughts. I am also grateful to the local community and businesses, and to the Global Federation of Animal Sanctuaries accredited sanctuaries and Association of Zoos and Aquariums accredited zoos, that genuinely offered or provided assistance. We are grateful to Cal Fire and to all the brave firefighters and emergency responders for their support and protection of our community.

While we at PAWS were fortunate, many people were not. We urge you to donate generously to the organizations that are providing fire relief and support.

Ed Stewart
PAWS President and Co-Founder

PAWS' veterinarian, Dr. Jackie Gai, checks on a patient at the
Calaveras County Animal Services shelter in San Andreas.

PAWS Helps Animals and People
in Wake of Devastating Butte Fire
By Dr. Jackie Gai, DVM
The devastating Butte Fire that earlier this month burned in Amador and Calaveras counties is, at the time of this writing, almost out. Over 475 homes were destroyed, more than 70,000 acres burned and two people lost their lives. PAWS' ARK 2000, which is located in Calaveras County, was fortunate to have not been affected by this fire.When we first heard the news about the fire our concern was focused on the sanctuary and the well-being of our staff and all of our resident animals. When it became clear that staff and animals were safe, we were able to turn our attention to the needs of other animals in our community.

PAWS President Ed Stewart delivered supplies to shelters housing pets and hay to those housing livestock. When Ed learned that eight big dog kennels were needed, he put the word out and within 45 minutes PAWS volunteers had raised the money to purchase the crates.

I contacted the Calaveras County Animal Services shelter in San Andreas. They were caring for a large number of pets that had been displaced or evacuated due to

Ed Stewart, and longtime PAWS volunteers Marcie and Chris Christensen, deliver eight large donated dog kennels to one of the pet evacuation shelters.
the fire. The shelter emailed me a list of needed supplies, and also informed me that their attending veterinarians had limited time to spend at the shelter because they were busy handling an influx of horses and livestock at a large evacuation center at the Amador County fairgrounds. That evening I collected some of the items from their wish list, including medications, cat/dog food, collars, leashes, eye ointment, and other needed supplies, and prepared to head out to help the next day.

The next morning PAWS' part-time veterinarian Dr. Jennifer Curtis and I delivered supplies to the shelter and offered our services. The staff asked us to look at dogs, cats, and rabbits with a variety of health problems. We helped set up comfortable housing for rabbits, and examined and treated several dogs and cats. The staff and volunteers at the Calaveras County Animal Service shelter were amazingly calm, friendly, upbeat and caring. Animal Control and Humane Officers from many surrounding communities were arriving at the shelter to help, some from 50 or more miles away. Despite the steady stream of needy, homeless animals coming in, everything was organized and all animals were being handled with love and care.

The Jackson Rancheria and Casino had turned its facility and grounds into an evacuation center for victims of the fire, including those with pets. So after we finished with the shelter animals, Dr. Curtis and I traveled to Jackson to see if any of the evacuees with pets needed assistance. Once we arrived, we briefly met with the Red Cross shelter director. She told us that the Jackson Rancheria operators had closed their hotel to the vacationing public and had turned the hotel, campgrounds and parking lots into a shelter for fire evacuees. They were feeding the evacuees three meals a day and had already set up a commissary of sorts, where evacuees could "shop" free of charge for necessities such as toothpaste, allergy medicine, blankets, tents, toys, pet supplies, or whatever they needed. It was truly sobering to see the number of people there, and an inspiration to see the outpouring of care from both the Red Cross and the Jackson Rancheria staff.

Evacuees with pets were welcomed to the RV park at the Rancheria. All were being fed and cared for, and the Rancheria had brought in portable hot showers for everyone. We stopped and talked with some of the people camping there, and they were surprisingly calm and in good spirits, and grateful for the assistance. Rancheria staff was everywhere, constantly circulating and ensuring that everyone was comfortable and had their needs met. Some evacuees were sleeping in RV's and campers, but just as many people were sleeping in the back of their trucks or in small pup tents on the asphalt ground.

During the days that followed I returned to the animal shelter in San Andreas to check on the animals, which now included a few birds. I worked alongside some incredibly dedicated people from Animal Services, Calaveras County Humane Society, Friends of Calaveras Animal Services (FOCAS) and a large number of community volunteers. Lost animals are still being found alive in the burn area, and are finding safety, food and care at the shelter. Each day brings new challenges for shelter staff and volunteers, as well as heartwarming stories as evacuated residents reunite with their beloved companion animals.
I witnessed the best in people and saw how they rose to incredible challenges without hesitation to help one another. Everyone I met took the time to connect with me, and everyone appreciated that we were thinking about the animals. As a past victim of natural disasters, including a flood that left my home uninhabitable for five months, I know how important it is to have support. I know personally just how meaningful and healing it is when someone simply smiles and asks if you need anything. I also witnessed the deep bonds that exist between animals and people, many of whom have lost everything except their pets.
The fire is almost out, but PAWS' neighbors and friends in these two counties will continue to need help in the weeks and months to come. Thousands of people and their pets and livestock were left homeless by the Butte fire. The Red Cross, the Humane Societies and animal shelters in the fire areas deserve our support, and all firefighters, disaster relief workers and rescuers deserve our heartfelt gratitude for their selfless dedication to helping others.

Thank you to Spotted Dog Yoga co-owner Nick Clark (pictured above with Ed Stewart) and his dog Bandit for delivering a vanload of pet food and supplies for the domestic animals displaced by the Butte Fire. The donations were part of the Spotted Dog Yoga and Folsom, California, community's "Emergency Pack the Van" campaign for victims of the fire. Read more about their efforts here.

Ed Stewart delivers donated hay to the Calaveras County fairgrounds in San Andreas, an evacuation site for livestock displaced by the Butte fire.

PAWS Cancels 2015 Elephant Grape Stomp Benefit

Out of respect for the people of Calaveras and Amador counties, where the recent wildfire claimed lives and destroyed homes and businesses, PAWS is canceling its Elephant Grape Stomp benefit scheduled for October 17th. Members of our own staff and volunteers were among those affected by this extraordinary event, with some people losing everything.

The Elephant Grape Stomp is a very popular and highly attended annual fundraising event, and it will return next year. If you have questions regarding a ticket you already purchased for the Elephant Grape Stomp, or a vote you placed for Ms. or Mr. Tuskany, please contact Kim Gardner at kgardner@pawsweb.org.

PAWS marched for elephants and rhinos in San Francisco last year, and we'll be marching again this year. We hope you can join us on Saturday, Oct 3. 

Where Will You March for
Elephants and Rhinos on October 3rd?

On Saturday, October 3, the third annual Global March for Elephants and Rhinos will take place in cities around the world to bring attention to the plight of these endangered animals. African elephants are being slaughtered at a rate of nearly 100 per day in some areas so their tusks can be turned into trinkets and carvings. A rhino is killed every eight hours for its horn, to be sold as status symbols and unproven "medicines."

PAWS will be marching in San Francisco, as we've done for the past two years. The march begins at 10:30 a.m. at Jefferson Square Park and ends at the UN Plaza. PAWS President Ed Stewart will be a featured speaker during the kickoff ceremonies of the march at the park. For more information, visit  MarchForElephants.org or click here for the Facebook event page.

If you can't join us in San Francisco, be sure to find an event near you and march to bring awareness to the plight of elephants and rhinos. To find a march in your area, click here.

Breaking News:
Three U.S. Zoos Proposing
to Import 18 African Elephants
Despite the life-long suffering caused when elephants in the wild are rounded up, captured and removed from their homeland to restock the dwindling supply of elephants in U.S. zoos, the Dallas Zoo, Omaha Zoo, and Sedgwick County Zoo (Kansas) want to import 18 elephants from Swaziland. The zoos are using the same tired public relations ploy, saying the elephants would otherwise be killed. The last AZA accredited zoo that made this claim was later exposed for having lied to the public: The import was nothing more than a commercial sale. Sadly, there is no evidence that the zoos or Swaziland government attempted to find a safe location for the elephants in Africa, even though this would have caused the least amount of distress and allowed them to live out their lives in a natural habitat. The threat of poaching is, of course, real, but elephant populations in some areas are actually increasing because of actions taken to protect them. And that's where zoos should be putting their millions - into protecting elephants rather than raiding the wild for more elephants to put in zoos. 
Worldwide, zoos have never stopped capturing elephants from the wild for display, claiming to educate the public about the need for conservation, yet the same problems for wild elephants persist and are even worsening. Obviously, zoos are not doing what they think they are. We can't say it enough: The answer is not to remove elephants from the wild but to protect them where they live.
PAWS strongly objects to this import, and we urge you to stand up against it as well. This import is bad for elephants and has nothing to do with conserving elephants or any other species. Its sole purpose is to populate U.S. zoos. The capture of these highly sensitive, intelligent and self-aware animals for lifetime display in zoos is cruel and archaic and should be relegated to the past. We will be sending you information soon on how you can oppose this cruel action. Stay tuned!

Above: Ginger, one of the Colton tigers, has died.

PAWS Says Goodbye to Ginger and Bambek

The PAWS family is saddened to report the recent passing of two very special residents.

Ginger was one of 39 tigers rescued in 2004 from deplorable conditions in a defunct pseudo sanctuary in Colton, California. Once at PAWS, she enjoyed sharing her spacious, grassy habitat with several other compatible tigers. Her closest companion was Patty, and the two were never far apart and could often be seen resting under a tree together. After Patty passed away, Ginger seemed to become more fond of the tiger keeper staff. Keeper Al remembers her bright, beautiful eyes and happy demeanor. She also held a special place in supervisor Renae's heart, as she would greet Renae every morning by rubbing against her fence and "chuffing" a friendly greeting.

Ginger was in very good health until early in 2015 when she suddenly showed signs that something was wrong. She was diagnosed with kidney disease in February, and medications and supplements helped make her feel better. In June, veterinary staff performed surgery to remove a tumor near her elbow, and biopsies revealed that it was unfortunately a very aggressive type of tumor that would likely grow back. After her surgery, she again rebounded and we saw some of her happy personality return. In August, the tumor began to regrow, and her kidneys began to fail. Because of the terminal nature of her kidney disease, the difficult but most compassionate decision was made to say goodbye.

Ginger was euthanized on August 26th, surrounded by the staff who lovingly cared for her. Ginger's estimated age at the time of her death was 16 years.

Bambek was one of four African lions rescued from a Bolivian circus by Animal Defenders International and welcomed to permanent sanctuary at PAWS. When

African lion
they first arrived at ARK 2000 in 2010, Bambek, Camba, Daktari, and Simba were not quite sure what to make of all the space and grass in their new home, but they very quickly realized that they were no longer expected to perform and could spend the rest of their lives relaxing.

The three male lions were always together, and could often be seen lying in a big pile. During the day they would lie under a big oak tree, their golden manes blowing in the breeze. At night they would sleep together in a cozy den box. After both Daktari and Simba passed away from cancer, Bambek chose to spend his days close to Camba, the Bolivian lioness who lived next door. Arthritis gave a distinctive swagger to his walk and he would "bunny-hop" along the fence with Camba.

In early July of this year, Bambek started to have problems with his eyes and it was

L-R: Simba, Bambek and Daktari, three African lions rescued from the circus in Bolivia, were always together and at night could be found sleeping together in their cozy den.
clear that he did not feel well. PAWS veterinarians performed an examination and discovered that he had cancer. He was prescribed an oral form of chemotherapy that very quickly made him feel better and put his cancer into temporary remission. His appetite improved, his energy level was good, and he would once again walk and bounce along the fence line he shared with Camba. His voice was strong and his distinctive roar was especially musical at sunset.

Chemotherapy gave Bambek over two months of quality time. When his appetite and energy level dropped off again, the difficult, but compassionate decision was made to humanely euthanize him. On September 22, while lying in the tall grass under a shady tree in his habitat, Bambek was euthanized. He was surrounded by the love of all who have cared for him at PAWS. This grand old lion, the oldest of the Bolivian lions, and also the gentlest, was estimated to be 23 years old at the time of his death. We will miss his beautiful voice and peaceful demeanor.

Truck Needed for ARK 2000 Tiger Habitat
The daily preparation of meals for bears, tigers, leopard and lions, and the distribution of those diets from the nutrition center to the various habitat areas at
ARK 2000 is dependent on the use of pickup trucks. Keepers load the trucks with the prepared meals and drive several miles distributing them.
The hay, special pellets, produce and browse for the elephants is also driven to the four separate barns, and keepers traverse the roads connecting them with daily deliveries of our "meals on wheels." PAWS literally depends on a "fleet" of used pickup trucks and vans for this important function. Purchasing and maintaining brand new vehicles is a huge expense and one we have never been able to afford. We are currently in need of replacement trucks for both the tiger and elephant habitats.
If you have a used, more recent model pickup truck that is reliable mechanically, please consider donating it to PAWS. Contact Elliott, at the PAWS office in Galt, at (209) 745-2606 to donate.

Legislative Updates:
California Senate Bill 716
California is poised to become the first state in the nation to ban the use of cruel bullhooks on elephants. SB 716, spearheaded by Senator Ricardo Lara and Assemblymember Rob Bonta, is on Governor Jerry Brown's desk, awaiting his signature. The Governor has until October 11 to sign the bill.

The bullhook resembles a fireplace poker, with a sharpened steel tip and hook at the end. It is used to control elephants through pain and fear, particularly in circuses, rides and entertainment. Handlers use the bullhook to prod, hook, jab and hit elephants, sometimes causing puncture wounds and lacerations.

PAWS is proud to be a key sponsor of SB 716, together with the Oakland Zoo and the Humane Society of the United States.

California Assembly Bill 96
This bill would end the sales of ivory and rhino horn in California, and it is now on Governor Jerry Brown's desk to be signed. AB 96 is spearheaded by Assembly Speaker Toni Atkins and co-authored by Senator Ricardo Lara.

Elephants and rhinos are being poached at an alarming rate: An average of 96 elephants are killed each day in Africa, and more than 1,000 rhinos out of a remaining 29,000 in the wild were poached in South Africa in 2014 alone. Unless action is taken now, elephants and rhinos are headed toward extinction.

California is the second largest market for the sale of illegal ivory in the United States, and these sales are estimated to have doubled over the past eight years. It's time for California to join the fight to save these animals and ensure they can live free in their native lands for generations to come.

If you are a California resident and you have not yet contacted Governor Brown and urged him to sign SB 716 and AB 96, now is the time to do it!

Call the Governor(916) 445-2841. Simply state that you strongly urge the Governor to sign the two important elephant protection bills on his desk: SB 716 to prohibit the use of bullhooks on elephants, and AB 96 to ban the sale of ivory and rhino horns. Be sure to say that you are a California resident.

Send an email: You must complete an on-line form to send a message. Under "Purpose of Communication," select "Have Comment." From the menu selection under "Please Choose Your Subject," click on "SB00716." After completing the requested information, click on "Continue" which will take you to the page where you can type a message expressing your support for the bullhook ban. Indicate your position by clicking on "Pro" above the message area. You must repeat the process to send a message regarding AB 96. Under "Please Choose Your Subject," click on "AB00096."

Fax a letter: (916) 558-3160

More Breaking News:
U.S. and China Agree to Enact Ivory Bans

President Obama and President Xi Jinping of China made a stunning announcement that can have an enormous impact on the illegal ivory trade and the preservation of African elephants. The two leaders have committed to enact "nearly complete bans on ivory import and export, including significant and timely restrictions on the import of ivory as hunting trophies, and to take significant and timely steps to halt the domestic commercial trade of ivory." Other efforts include joint training, technical exchanges, information sharing, public education, and enhancement of international law enforcement cooperation.

Thank You Oakland Zoo and Summer ZooCamp!
PAWS thanks the Oakland Zoo for making us the beneficiary of monies raised during its annual Summer ZooCamp. This year's ZooCamp educated kids about big cats. The campers learned facts about tigers in the wild, as well as those made to

Meet Charlie, who raised
$151 for PAWS' animals!
perform in circuses and used in entertainment. The kids got to "meet" PAWS' tigers and our other wild animals by watching PAWS videos and through a special PowerPoint presentation created for this event. They also learned about the important work we do for rescued and retired wild animals, including the tigers who are living in natural habitats at PAWS' sanctuaries after having been kept as exotic pets or held in a run-down pseudo sanctuary.

We are grateful to the Oakland Zoo and Summer ZooCamp for its very generous donation for the care of the animals at PAWS. They raised over $3,000 and, very importantly, helped more than 1,000 campers learn the importance of letting animals be animals. Some campers were so inspired they took action. A camper named Charlie was so enthused about the work of PAWS that he raised $151 through a Facebook campaign!

Thank you, Charlie!

Good News for Animals
No more wild animal acts in Missoula, Montana. The Missoula city council voted 8-3 to ban the use of exotic animals in performances. The ban includes elephants, white tigers, snow leopards and African lions, among other exotic animals, and it goes into effect in July 2016.

The Netherlands prohibits use of wild animals in circuses. The decision was made in 2014 but the law officially went into effect this month. The Netherlands joins the many other countries that have enacted restrictions on the use of wild animals in entertainment.

George Carden Circus International ends animal acts. Bill Cunningham, owner of the George Carden Circus International and the largest producer of Shrine circuses in the country, is ending the use of wild animals acts. He produces shows in 100 cities every year. Cunningham, a lifelong Shriner, is working with PETA to urge all Shrine organizations to stop using circuses that force elephants, tigers, lions and other wild animals to perform.

The Fountain City Lions Club (Indiana) cancels elephant rides. After receiving numerous complaints and calls expressing concerns about the treatment of African elephant Nosey, the Lions Club decided to forego elephant rides at its festival this month. Kudos to everyone who is working hard to educate fair operators and others about the plight of Nosey, a solitary elephant who is forced to perform and give rides at the point of a bullhook by owner Hugo Liebel. (See a short video showing Liebel hooking Nosey hard on the top of her head.) If you see elephant rides are coming to your local fair, speak out for the elephants! Need help? Email cdoyle@pawsweb.org.

A BIG Thank You!
September Amazon Wish List Donors!
Patricia Connelly: three gallons Red Cell, two bags of Missing Link Ultimate Skin & Coat, one 24 inch Drum Tilting Fan, one 10 lb. tub of Psyllium, three Hog Scoops (shovels), three bags Natural Balance dry cat food. Alyson Rossi: one bottle Azodyl, one box gloves, one 5 lb. tub psyllium. Alison Daddo: one case of unsalted peanuts. Laura Tracy Hawkins: one gallon Red Cell, one bag Ultimate Equine Skin & Coat. Lisa McCauley: one bag Natural Balance dry cat food, one 5 lb. tub of Psyllium. Carol Haft: one case of unsalted peanuts, one bottle CosequinDS 132#, one box AA batteries, two boxes of gloves. Michele Smith: one bottle CosequinDS 132#. Laura Tracy Hawkins: one bag Missing Link Ultimate Skin & Coat. Silvia M. Orellana: one gallon Chlorhexidine Solution. Myron Lenning: one 24 in. Drum Tilting Fan. Mary Kugler: one 24 in. Drum Tilting Fan. Jim Grant and Peg Chapla: one 20 lb. tub Psyllium. Silvia M. Orellana: one bottle Red Cell. Kathy Shimata: one Hog Scoop (shovel). Barbara Moran: one 5 lb. tub of Psyllium. Diane Honeysett: one 10 lb. tub of Psyllium. Robbi Henle: one bag Missing Link Ultimate Equine Skin & Coat, one bottle Red Cell, one bag Natural Balance cat food. Pamela Mattson: one bottle AminAvast, one bag dry cat food, one 10 lb. tub Psyllium. Anonymous: three bottles Red Cell, 1 bag Ultimate Equine Skin & Coat, one push broom.
View wish list items that are needed,
but not listed on the Amazon list, here.

There are many ways you can help PAWS animals:
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 Amazon Wish List

EBAY Giving Works
List items on EBAY and choose PAWS as your charity. Donate a percentage of each sale to the animals. Visit our EBAY charity listing page here. Start selling!

Corporate Donations
and Matching Fund Programs
Learn more about what is needed.

Donate Your Vehicle To PAWS

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.

Shop through IGIVE and raise money for PAWS!
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Purchase PAWS apparel and merchandise.
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PO Box 849
Galt, CA 95632
(209) 745-2606