Meet Helena and Diego: How Unwanted Animals End Up At PrideRock
By far, private owners surrendering their exotic wild animals, in our case big cats, is the number one cause of animals needing homes in sanctuaries. Often times, the animals are purchased as cute cubs and are not able to be cared for when they grow into powerful and dangerous adults. Shockingly, many cubs can be purchased for less than the price of a purebred dog. (At the end of this article there are some resources for learning more, such as an example of tiger cubs purchased for $100-300.)
Along with private owners surrendering their animals, breeding facilities often surrender females if they are no longer able to breed or have grown old. Another large issue is that sanctuaries cannot maintain operations due to financial strain and have to close. In this case, the animals have to be relocated to other sanctuaries. Also, in the best cases, zoos retire old animals to sanctuaries, however, unfortunately this does not always happen.
Helena and Diego
Helena and Diego arrived at PrideRock in February of 2016. They were rescued from a private owner after he had passed away.
Diego and Helena lived their whole lives in very small metal enclosures that were constructed of wired together metal panels, so they could not see outside. These small enclosures were located on property that contained a gun range, and the enclosures were not far from the range itself. This created a lot of stress and anxiety for the animals, for they heard loud gunshots all day every day. Diego is about 7 years old now, and it is believed that he and Helena are around the same age.
Helena, African Spotted Hyena
Diego, African Lion
Following their arrival at PrideRock, they had a lot of adjusting to do. They have both grown into very playful and friendly personalities, and they love for PrideRock staff and volunteers to come say hello to them. They will live at PrideRock for the rest of their days in the peace and quiet, always getting to feel the breeze and the sunshine.
Please Help Us Help Them
At PrideRock we cover all the needs of the animals, permanently, and the costs are extensive, especially with regards to feeding. Please consider making a tax-deductible donation to help us cover the expenses; we believe that such an investment is money well-spent, and that’s why we exist. Please join us now.
If You’d Like to Learn More
Below are several articles that illustrate the issues of misplaced animals.