Lions, Tigers and a Bear Named Meatball? What the what am I talking about?!? Let me introduce you to “Meatball”, a 500 pound bear, captured by the California Department of Fish and Game (DFG) in Glendale, California. “Meatball” named after his favorite food isn’t afraid of humans and was wandering around the area looking for new friends and food, not necessarily in that order.
Unfortunately, because the bear had become “habituated”, or unafraid of humans, he posed a danger and had to be removed from the wild. Instead of having him euthanized, the DFG decided to find the big guy a new home. AWWW! So they gave him a ride to Lions, Tigers and Bears, an exotic animal sanctuary in East San Diego, CA.
Meatball was quarantined, examined and given the a okay to be transferred to another facility in Colorado, but they have a law that says “it is unlawful for a wildlife sanctuary to possess a bear taken from the wild.” RUH-ROH!
The problem is that Lions, Tigers and Bears accepted a new bear in June and is at full capacity. Its not like you can just find room to squeeze in another 500 pound animal! So, they need your help and are asking for donations to help build Meatball’s habitat.
“We need to do what’s best for Meatball,” said Bobbi Brink, Founder and Director of Lions Tigers and Bears. “We are ready to begin building the habit as soon as possible but need financial support from the public in order to get started.”
The big guy needs a safety bedroom and an enclosed outdoor area to roam and play that will be full of rolling hills, caves, hammocks, boulders and natural grasses. In his free time, when he wasn’t scaring people, Meatball was found and filmed pool hopping, so they’d also like to build him a pool. LTB is currently waiting on official estimates from contractors, the much larger bear habitat currently on premises cost $250,000 to complete.
“This bear has touched so many hearts with his story. We want to see this through to a happy ending,” continued Brink. “The California Department of Fish and Game has assisted us in every way possible, and we thank them for their ongoing support to do what is best for Meatball.”
For more information about Meatball, to donate to the habitat fund or to become a member of the Lions, Tigers and Bears community, please visit: http://www.lionstigersandbears.org or call 619-659-8078.