California Bill to Ban Elephant Bullhooks Clears Senate With 29-9 Vote!
PAWS is very happy to report that on April 18 the California state Senate passed SB 1062, the bill introduced by state senator Ricardo Lara that would ban the use of cruel bullhooks on elephants. The bill now moves to the Assembly where it must first clear assigned committees before going to the floor for a vote. If the bill passes in the Assembly, it would then go to Governor Jerry Brown for his signature.

Senate Votes 29-9 To Pass SB 1062
California Senate Votes 29-9 To Pass SB 1062
Watch the discussion and the vote.

Our supporters will recall that PAWS, working collaboratively with The Humane Society of the U.S. and the Oakland Zoo, passed a bullhook bill in California last year. Unfortunately, Governor Jerry Brown vetoed the bill because it called for criminal penalties. This new bill is a non-criminal version of last year's bill, which we hope to again pass and send to the Governor's desk.
PAWS has worked with elephants for more than 30 years, and even though we care for bulls and highly dangerous elephants, we do not use a bullhook. No AZA-accredited zoo in California uses this cruel and archaic weapon.
The bullhook resembles a fireplace poker, with a sharpened steel tip and hook at the end. It is used to dominate and control elephants through pain and fear. Handlers forcefully jab, hook and strike elephants on sensitive parts of their bodies during training, performances and routine handling - and sometimes for no reason other than to re-establish their dominance. Even when not in use, the bullhook is a constant reminder of the painful punishment that can be delivered at any time.
Today, there is a safer and more humane way of managing elephants that uses positive reinforcement training, food treats and gentle words of encouragement. With this method, keepers provide excellent husbandry and veterinary care without the use of intimidation and painful punishment.
The cities of Los Angeles and Oakland prohibit use of the bullhook, and San Francisco has prohibited the use of all performing wild animals.
If you live in California and want to help make our state the first in the nation to ban the bullhook, please: 
  • Be sure to "like" PAWS' Facebook page, where we will be posting the latest information on how Californians can help pass this important bill. 
  • Stay tuned for PAWS alerts containing information on contacting your elected officials, urging them to support SB 1062.
If you don't live in California but know friends and family who do, please alert them to SB 1062. Or consider working to pass a ban on bullhooks in your area.

For more information, please contact Catherine Doyle, PAWS' director of science, research and advocacy, at [email protected].

Help PAWS Raise $25,000
In 24 Hours!

The countdown to the third annual Sacramento, California, region's BIG Day of Giving has begun. Starting at midnight on May 3rd, PAWS will be participating in this 24-hour giving challenge, part of Give Local America, a national day of giving that celebrates philanthropy in communities across the country.

Our goal on May 3rd is to raise $25,000 in 24 hours for the purchase of a large, customizable stock trailer (like the one shown in the photo on the right) for use in rescue operations, moving animals within and between our three sanctuaries, and for transporting animals in need of highly specialized care to the U.C. Davis veterinary hospital. Our current trailer is old and in need of replacement. With your support we hope to meet this goal on May 3rd.

On May 3rd, donate here:

WHY give on the BIG Day of Giving?
WHY give on the BIG Day of Giving?

Any individual or business, regardless of where you are located, may donate. All donations must be made via debit or credit card through the BIG Day of Giving website.

HOW to give on the BIG Day of Giving.
HOW to give on the BIG Day of Giving.

BIG Day of Giving Prize Challenges!
PAWS will have the chance to win any of the following cash prizes. We will be working around the clock and announcing the prize challenges via Facebook and Twitter throughout this 24-hour giving event so you can help increase our chances of winning.
Blast Off Challenge! - $3,000 (First gift of the day.)

Landing Prize - $2,500 (Last gift of the day.)

Hourly Prize: Most Dollars Raised - $1,000
A $1,000 prize will be awarded every hour during May 3rd to the nonprofit that has raised the most money during that hour. Pick an hour that you would like to donate, and then challenge others by email and social media sites to donate during the same hour. Post your donation time to PAWS' Facebook page so more friends can participate - there's strength in numbers and you might just help PAWS win $1000!

Night Owl Prize (midnight - 6 a.m.) - $2,000
Three $2,000 prizes will be awarded to the non-profit organization that raises the most money between midnight and 6 a.m. We'll be up all night watching the leaderboard and will try out best to thank our donors in real time!

Nugget Markets Sacramento Dinnertime Challenge - $1,000
A $1,000 prize will be awarded to the Sacramento County nonprofit that raises the most money between 6 p.m. and 8 p.m. (PAWS' Galt Sanctuary and main office are located in Sacramento County.)

Blue Light Special! - Total of $20,000
Randomly throughout the 24 hours of giving, BIG Day of Giving will be announcing 15 minute, dollar for dollar match opportunities. This means that during the 15 minute Blue Light Special, all donations of $100 or less will be matched dollar for dollar until the match amount for that special has been reached. Match amounts will vary. A total of $20,000 will be awarded. We'll keep you updated via Facebook and Twitter.

Matching Gifts!
When Golden 1 Credit Union members in California use their Golden 1 debit or credit card to make a BIG Day of Giving donation, their contribution will get an extra boost - Golden 1 will proportionately match up to $50,000 in members' online gifts at on May 3rd.
Other ways you can help PAWS meet its goal
Online giving challenges like these are successful because of each individual's own network. Please pay it forward by sharing this email with friends, family and colleagues and by posting this information to your social media network. Ask your connections to do the same.
Thank you in advance for your generosity to the animals at PAWS.

24 hours to Give!
Midnight 12:00 a.m., May 3rd!

BIG Day of Giving Social Media Links:
Hashtag: #BIGDoG2016

U.C. Davis Veterinary Students
Visit ARK 2000
On a warm, sunny Saturday in early April, PAWS welcomed a group of students from the University of California, Davis, School of Veterinary Medicine's Wildlife and Aquatic Animal Medicine Club and Behavior Medicine Club for their annual field trip to our sanctuary at ARK 2000. PAWS' veterinarian Dr. Jackie Gai, PAWS President and Cofounder Ed Stewart, and ARK 2000 Sanctuary Manager Brian Busta led a tour of the sanctuary, sharing information about the animals and their care. Students especially enjoyed visiting bull elephant Nicholas where they had the opportunity to watch a protected contact training session. Dr. Gai and Brian demonstrated how foot care, blood collection, examinations of the mouth, and other important husbandry and medical procedures are performed without the use of bullhooks or coercion.
One of the students who wrote to us after the tour had this to say about the experience: "I was so inspired and impressed by the values that you hold and your commitment to those values, both in how you take care of the animals that come to your facility and in the way that you protect part of your property to preserve the habitat of local wildlife."
Many of these students will go on to work with wild animals in their future careers, either free-ranging or captive, and PAWS appreciates the opportunity to interact with these bright, young future professionals.

L-R: Auburn Honda General Manager David Jones, PAWS' board members Carol Haft and Debbie Morrow, and Auburn Honda Sales Manager Graham Fernandez.

PAWS Animals Benefit From Bike Raffle
PAWS thanks Auburn Honda in Auburn, Calif., for holding a bike raffle that raised more than $600 for the animals we care for at our three sanctuaries. Tickets for the raffle were sold at our March 5th Open House at ARK 2000 and at the dealership. 

On April 16, the day of the drawing, PAWS' board members Debbie Morrow and Carol Haft, along with volunteers Nancy Neuburger and Ron and Marilyn Barlow, sold raffle tickets at the dealership, answered questions and handed out information about PAWS. Carol Haft drew the winning ticket, announcing Carolynn Kearby of Yuba City as the winner of the bicycle. Congratulations Carolynn!
An extra-special thanks to Auburn Honda Service Department Coordinator and Customer Relations Representative Leanne Price for arranging this event, and General Manager David Jones and Sales Manager Graham Fernandez for their generosity and continued support of their community and neighbors. We also thank event "chef" Tanner Youngquist who prepared a special meal, compliments of Auburn Honda, for customers and staff during the event, and PAWS' friend Barbara Ballas.

Amboseli Elephant Research Project Founder and Director Cynthia Moss.

Oakland Zoo's "Celebrating Elephants 2016" to Featured Famed Researcher Cynthia Moss

The Oakland Zoo will mark the 20th anniversary of its "Celebrating Elephants" event - an annual benefit for the Amboseli Trust for Elephants (ATE) in Kenya - with a gala on May 21. The event features world-renowned researcher, conservationist and writer, Cynthia Moss, who is the founder and director of ATE.
Most of what we know about African elephants today can be credited to the work of Moss and her Amboseli Elephant Research Project (AERP) team who have been investigating the lives of elephants at the Amboseli National Park for more than 45 years - the longest running study of a land mammal. Moss is popularly known for her more than 30-year study of the matriarch elephant, Echo, who has been the subject of several books and documentaries on PBS and the BBC. Insights gained from Echo and her family have contributed significantly to the understanding of elephants, including their life-cycles, methods of communication, emotional lives, and cooperative care of their young. Echo died in 2008 at the age of 65.

The "Celebrating Elephants" evening includes food, beverages, an exciting silent auction, and a chance for elephant lovers to gather together and celebrate these iconic animals while contributing to their conservation. Doors open at 6 p.m. Click here for more information and to purchase tickets.
This special evening will be followed by a fun-filled, daytime family event at the Oakland Zoo on May 28. For additional information on the daytime "Celebrating Elephants" festivities, click here.

Hammer was one of 39 tigers rescued from a roadside zoo in Colton, California.

Hammer the Tiger Passes Away
Hammer was one of 39 tigers rescued 12 years ago from deplorable, abusive conditions at a roadside zoo in Colton, California, known as "Tiger Rescue." He arrived battle-scarred, aggressive, and nervous as a result of being kept in crowded and stressful conditions where he had to fight to get enough food to eat. The Colton tigers were moved to PAWS' ARK 2000 sanctuary in groups of 6 to 8 over a period of months. Although initially housed in the same groups they had been living with, it became apparent that many of the tigers had been kept in socially incompatible combinations. Hammer was one of those, with a long history of fighting with others. In the early weeks and months after these abused and neglected tigers arrived, we paid extra attention to learning each individual's personality and needs. As a result, Hammer was given his own enclosure where he would not feel threatened and could finally relax.
Hammer enjoyed a spacious habitat near tiger neighbors that he liked. His favorite friend was Willie, another large male with a long history of fighting. Over time, Hammer and Willie developed a close bond. Tiger keepers fondly remember the two tigers spending the entire day, sunning themselves in the tall green grass of their spacious, adjoining habitats. Every evening they walked side-by-side up the hill toward their cozy dens, rubbing their sides together along the fence and "chuffing" affectionate greetings to each other along the way. Hammer's demeanor evolved from one of suspicion and defensiveness, to one of contented happiness. It was a joy to see this transformation occur.
Tiger supervisor Renae remembers Hammer's beautiful yellow-green eyes and the heartwarming way his personality blossomed as he aged. PAWS' keeper staff occasionally rub spices on the logs in the tiger enclosures as a sensory treat. When Hammer's favorite log was scented with spices, he would lie down and roll his body all over the log, rub his head on it, and drool in sheer ecstasy. Hammer thrived on the expert, attentive care provided by our staff and grew healthy and strong on a specially prepared, nutritionally wholesome diet tailored specifically to his likes and dislikes.
Hammer was diagnosed with chronic kidney disease in January of this year, a serious and progressive disease that is all too common in older cats both wild and domestic. Hammer received medications, vitamins, and supplements that supported his kidney function, giving him a new lease on life, at least for a while. One day late in March, Hammer's condition took a sudden turn for the worse when he had a seizure and lost his appetite. When it was clear that his kidneys were finally failing, the difficult but most compassionate decision was made to euthanize him.
Hammer passed peacefully from this life on April 1 at the estimated age of 20 years, surrounded by many who loved and cared for him. His magnificent energy and presence will be missed by all who were fortunate enough to know him.

All donations will be used for tiger care at ARK 2000.

Good News for Animals
The Cole Bros. Circus has canceled its 2016 season, according to PETA. This circus has long been criticized for its exhibitors' violations of the federal Animal Welfare Act, and public protest kept the circus from performing in two cities in New York and New Jersey last year. The circus had included elephant and big cat acts.
Iran joins eight other countries in banning wild animal acts in circuses. The country's Department of the Environment will no longer issue permits allowing wildlife to perform.
More countries have destroyed their ivory stocks to fight the illegal wildlife trade: This month Malaysia crushed and then incinerated 9.5 tonnes of confiscated African elephant tusks, in an effort to help deter smugglers who have long used the country as a key transit point. Cameroon recently burned some 2,000 illegally trafficked elephant tusks and hundreds of finished ivory products in what is believed to be one of the largest incinerations of poached wildlife goods in African history. In March, Malawi burned about 2.6 tons of ivory, and Italy destroyed just under a tonne, sending the message that these countries are dedicated to stopping the eradication of African elephants.

Ben is one of seven bears living at PAWS' ARK 2000 sanctuary.

May 14 
ARK 2000 Open House
A limited number of tickets are still available for our ARK 2000 Open House to be held on Saturday, May 14, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Tickets are $50 for adults, $25 for seniors (60 and over) and $25 for children age 12 and under. Tickets must be purchased in advance - we do not sell tickets at the gate on the day of the event.
Two ways to purchase: Click here to buy online and print your tickets at home; or call 209-745-2606, Monday-Friday, 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. PST, to charge by phone. Visit our calendar of events page for more information. Online ticket sales close on Thursday, May 12, 2016.

Save the Date: PAWS' 2016
International Captive Wildlife Conference

You won't want to miss the PAWS 2016 International Captive Wildlife Conference, November 11-13, 2016! This premier global summit will address the confinement and use of exotic and wild animals - with a special focus on elephants, bears and tigers/lions. You can expect to hear from outstanding speakers from the fields of scientific research, conservation, law, and animal welfare, policy and care.
This year's conference will be held in San Andreas, California, home to PAWS' ARK 2000 sanctuary where we care for elephants, lion, black leopard, tigers and bears. Conference attendees will have the opportunity to tour ARK 2000 on Sunday, November 13, led by PAWS' President Ed Stewart. This is a unique chance to experience first-hand our beautiful, 2300-acre natural habitat sanctuary, learn more about the personal stories of our animals, and see how their lives have been transformed.
PAWS has been presenting outstanding conferences since 1992, attracting people from around the world. Our aim is to educate, stimulate critical discussion and promote action to protect and improve the welfare of captive wildlife.  
Online registration will begin on June 1. A link will be provided on our Calendar of Events page, along with a list of featured speakers and program.
We hope to see you in San Andreas!

A BIG Thank You!

April Amazon Wish List Donors
Kitty Hawk: eight bags of unsalted, in-shell peanuts. Patricia Connelly: one 30-lb. bag of Blue Buffalo, one 5 lb. bag of Missing Link Ultimate Skin & Coat. Carol Haft: one gallon Chlorhexidine solution, one gallon Red Cell, four bags of unsalted, in-shell peanuts. Linda Faircloth: one 20-lb. tub of Psyllium. Kelly Isara: one box of apples (16 ct.). Sandra Loey: one 315' spool of trimmer line. Margaret Kane: one 30-lb. bag of Blue Buffalo. Cecelia Littlepage: one 24" push broom, one 40-lb. box of oranges. Anonymous Donations: two gallons of Red Cell, three boxes of nitrile gloves (small, medium and large).
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

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!
Up to 26% of your purchase - at more than 1,600 retailers - can be donated to PAWS.
PAWS is rated
a 4-Star Charity 
Purchase PAWS apparel and merchandise.
Clothing for adults, kids, toddlers and infants, as well as other fun merchandise like coffee mugs - available from our online gift shop.

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
PAWS receives no government funding and must rely on your donations to continue our work. Three ways to give and every donation matters. Learn more

PAWS merchandise is fun, educational,
and always makes a great gift!
PAWS' Note Cards
Bears, Tigers, Elephants
Dozens of different designs are now available in our gift shop.
$24.99 for a set of 10 + tax + worldwide shipping

More items, more designs, more fun - all to benefit the animals at PAWS!
Logo clothing available in adult, children, toddler and infant sizes.

"Seeing the Elephant" Weekend Getaways | PAWS Animal Adoptions
Both available for gift purchases.
Stay Connected
PO Box 849
Galt, CA 95632
(209) 745-2606