Bear bile is a digestive fluid used in traditional Eastern medicine and household products. Through open wounds, the bile is extracted from captive bears who often suffer from infections because of the painful process. Many die from complications. And even though bear bile farming has been illegal in Vietnam since 1992, the ban has been hard to enforce.
Thankfully, a twist of fate has saved these six bears from languishing at the farm. Rescuers from Animals Asia arrived for the bears last week. They gave them names — the three males are now named Mana, Tim and Manu and the three females are Anh Sang, Holly and Mia — and began the process of freeing them.