Being adventurous doesn't come naturally to me. So when I was offered a job with Animals Asia in China it took all of my false bravado to say yes! I have now spent the last fortnight narrowing down to the bear (pun intended) necessities of life to take to China with me.
I am very lucky to have such an amazing job here in Adelaide working with our native animals at the Adelaide Koala and Wildlife Hospital, as well as working with clients and pets at the Southern Animal Hospital. But I have always had a strong drive to make change in the world and this new opportunity will help me do just that!
Animals Asia is a well established organization operating out of China and Vietnam. They have a few missions but the one I will be working closely with is the ending of Bear Bile Farming.
Bear Bile Farming is a trade that involves locking up Asiatic Black bears, Malayan Sun Bears and occasionally other species in small cages while draining the bile from their gall bladder. This bile is then used in traditional Chinese medicine. This process is painful, and some bears will survive 20 years in these conditions with out ever experiencing freedom of movement or normal behaviors.
Although the bile does have medicinal properties modern science has made synthetic versions of these products that work in the same way, and are cruelty free.
So although it will be hard and challenging work I will be making a real change to the bears lives and hopefully to Asia's animal welfare standards. I am very excited about starting this new opportunity, but I am also sad to leave my current position with such great employers, work mates and volunteers.
Stay in tune to get updates on my new work overseas and I will continue to post about pets, wildlife and my general musings about being a vet!
To learn more about Animals Asia or how you can help check out there website