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Health check-up in FOUR PAWS BEAR SANCTUARY Prishtina


© FOUR PAWS | Jeta Lepaja

Six bears – together with three recently-found little bear orphans – get a thorough medical check up, plus dental 


© FOUR PAWS | Jeta Lepaja

It was that time again: four vets and dentist Dr Mark Loose travelled to FOUR PAWS BEAR SANCTUARY Prishtina to give the residents  a medical check up. The veterinary team treated not just six adult bears, but also Ema, Oska and Ron. The three cubs had recently been found kept in flats in Kosovo, they were rescued and have since been in FOUR PAWS care. Dr Johanna Painer, who also took part in the previous check-up in May 2013, said that the  bears are making good progress: “They are looking much healthier, their  fur is thicker now, and they’re playing with each other more.”

Ema, Oska and Ron are doing well

The three cubs, Ema, Oska and Ron, were also examined. Blood samples were taken, the bears’ teeth were checked, and they each received a microchip implant. Good news: all three are in the best of health although their condition must still be constantly monitored.


It’s still unclear whether the cubs will be able to be released into the wild. For this to work, they have to have as little contact with humans as possible – even though they still need to be well cared for, as they’re so young and can’t yet be left to their own devices.

The team is currently looking into the possibility of releasing the cubs into the forests of Kosovo. Until more is known, they can of course stay in BEAR SANCTUARY Prishtina, where a 1,300 square foot enclosure is being built for them.

© FOUR PAWS | Jeta Lepaja

Private keeping of bears has been banned in Kosovo since autumn 2010

Since 2013, thirteen former restaurant bears have been living in BEAR SANCTUARY Prishtina. Although the private keeping of bears has been banned in Kosovo since autumn 2010, cubs Ema, Oska, and Ron were discovered just recently. They had been separated from their mother when only three weeks old. The police first became aware of Ema when a family posted details on Facebook of how they acquired the bear and how they were keeping her. Shortly afterwards Oska and Ron also came to light. As all the cubs are around the same age, it is thought they may well be siblings.