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🌲🐾 Best Wishes from IEAS this Holiday Season! 🐾🌲
International Exotic Animal Sanctuary

December, 2015

 

Happy Holidays from
the International Exotic Animal Sanctuary
Welcome Our New Friends
 
This past year has been an exciting one as there have been some new additions to the IEAS family!  Not only did we welcome home two more bear cubs, but we have also become the forever home for five more felines AND two grey wolves!  We are so happy to be able to help these wonderful animals!
 
Teddy and Twinkle, two American black bear cubs, were the first to arrive in January.  Both of these bear cubs were rescued from Alaska.  Twinkle was found wandering alone in southern Alaska, a city named Kalisef, while Teddy was found alone in Calico Bluff Homestead on the Yukon River, 15 miles from Eagle, Alaska.  Both cubs were brought to IEAS after being examined and cared for at the Alaska Zoo.  At first, Teddy and Twinkle were a bit shy, but with the help of our Emotional Enrichment Program, they began to trust their human caregivers.  Now, these pseudo-siblings enjoy their days relaxing in their tree or high up on their perches.  When it was warmer, these two young bears LOVED splashing around in their pools!
 
Louis and Julia are six month old siblings who recently arrived at IEAS.  These two tiger cubs couldn’t be more affectionate!  They love attention from their human caregivers and are happy to be able to act like young tigers, rough housing with each other.  They also have come to enjoy the attention given to them by their neighbor, Kimberly.  Kim, a white Bengal tiger, was fascinated with these two little tykes.  Having them next door seems to have brought out her maternal instincts.  She always watches them as they play and explore and will come to the fence to give them affectionate chuffs.  We have also seen her playing with them through the fence and helping them practice behaviors like stalking. 
 
Wiki is a male jaguar who arrived at the same time as the tigers.  Wiki is enjoying his new habitat that is equipped with a pool, high perches and trees.  So far, he is still getting used to his surroundings and trying to figure out his new neighbor, Cappy.  Cappy, our capybara, has shown some spunk when it comes to his large, new neighbor.  Cappy has not shied away from Wiki.  Instead he sits and stares at him, watching Wiki move about his habitat and even chases him along the fence.
 
Our other two tiger cubs, ShereKhan and KiKi, are year and half old siblings.  These two tigers wasted no time exploring their large, naturalistic habitat.  Their first stop was the pool.  They both seemed fascinated with the water spout and enjoyed walking along the waterfall.  By day two, they had already found their favorite hiding spot within some bamboo.  They have even made friends with Big John their neighbor.  John will spend the evening laying or walking along their separating fence line chuffing at these two youngsters.
 
Finally, we are excited to add yet another species to the IEAS family!  Two grey wolves recently arrived at IEAS!  Romulus and Remus are five months old siblings.  They are still settling into their new home, and are a bit shy with visitors.  However, with the help of our Emotional Enrichment Program, they are becoming more comfortable with their human caregivers.
ACTIVITY AT INTERNATIONAL EXOTIC ANIMAL SANCTUARY
This year has been one of consolidation and improvements to the condition of our facility as well as new animals and improvement in the emotional welfare of our resident animals.
 
Here at The International Exotic Animal Sanctuary we have an Emotional Enrichment Program that was introduced by our Animal Behaviorist, Louis Dorfman a number of years ago.  What is emotional enrichment? “Emotional enrichment is a technique for improving and enhancing an animal's emotional life and minimizing stress, agitation, and irritation within the context of the animal's personality and biological instincts, as well as creating a positive relationship between the animals and the human caregivers.”  Introduced by Mr. Dorfman at the sanctuary over 20 years ago this program has enriched and improved the lives of the sanctuary animals and their attitude towards their caregivers and humans generally. Not only being practiced by the staff here at the sanctuary, interns are now carrying on the Emotional Enrichment Program to other facilities across the country. The sanctuary has had numerous visits from other zoos, sanctuaries, and animal facilities to learn and research this program. Mr. Dorfman has spoken and chaired workshops at a number of AZA meetings across the country.  He has assisted a number of other zoos and animal facilities in working with their staff in implementing his Emotional Enrichment Program.
Over the years, Mr. Dorfman’s Emotional Enrichment Program has touched many lives and expanded both internally and externally to our facility. Internally, through Mr. Dorfman’s leadership and guidance; staff members, volunteers, and interns are educated on the many facets of emotional well-being in regards to the various animals we have the privilege of caring for here at IEAS. Externally, upon completion of the Intern Program, our foreign and domestic interns then take this valuable knowledge with them to showcase and benefit the animals at the various facilities they ultimately work at as keepers, leaders, and more. With previous interns landing jobs globally and Mr. Dorfman’s diligence, his Emotional Enrichment program has truly grown to be a program that is becoming known and utilized around the world.
Just this year, IEAS was in the position to take in a variety of new residents. This most recent batch of new residents was a total of 7 unfortunate animals who needed a good home. Having so many new residents is both a very exciting and a very challenging time. Each new resident must be assessed for their individual nutritional, medical, environmental, and emotional needs. Our recent group of interns had the very rare opportunity to see Mr. Dorfman exhibit his knowledge with these new residents. Both during and after this experience, the interns got to learn first-hand about the Emotional Enrichment Program and got the chance to learn from 20+ years of experience and knowledge. The knowledge that was transferred helped benefit both the interns in question as well as the animals those individual interns get to have their own Emotional Enrichment visits with and improving their overall visit and emotional well being.
Within the last two months we have received four young tigers and two young Tundra wolves, a sub-species of Grey Wolf that is one of the larger of the wolf sub-species.
We had a naming of the two pairs of tigers in return for a $10,000 donation each, and Kathrine Freire of Ranger Plant Construction named one pair ShereKhan and KiKi. They are around 20 months old and brother and sister; ShereKhan is orange and KiKi is white. They are lovely, loveable tigers and have adopted quickly to our Emotional Enrichment Program. Both are already very affectionate with Mr. Dorfman and look forward to visits from outside their habitat with all our staff.

The other pair received a similar $10,000 donation from Mr. Dorfman’s wife as a surprise birthday present and are named Louis and Julia. They are about 8 months old and one is also orange while the other is white. They have a similar personality to ShereKhan and KiKi and likewise are already very bonded with their human caregivers.
 
The wolves, Romulus and Remus, are still quite naturally shy, but they are responding to the patient presence of Mr. Dorfman and staff. They are slowly developing trust and will now come within arm’s length. Ultimately they should bond with their human caregivers, and despite wolves’ inaccurate reputation, they become quite friendly with a knowledgeable human companion. That relationship will greatly enhance their quality of life once the trust is established.

All of our resident bears are comfortable with their human caregivers, and consequently they have no stress in their daily lives due to human presence; even looking forward to visits and feeding times almost as much for the companionship as for the meals. Our bears must be the happiest bears in the world, with large naturalistic enclosures, trees, meadows, ponds, and nothing to fear as well as all the food they can eat.
We at the sanctuary would like to take this opportunity to invite each and every person and their friends to visit in the coming months to ask about and observe the results of this unique program and our new animals first hand.
 
Sleepy, Sleepy Bears
One thing the staff at IEAS are always happy to see is when our animals exhibit natural behaviors that one would see in their wild cousins.  This means we are doing our job at giving them the best life possible in captivity and providing them with the right enrichment!  With the weather getting cooler, our resident bears are starting to get ready for the winter.  Just like bears in the wild, many of the bears at IEAS go through what is known as torpor.  Most believe that bears in the wild are “true hibernators”, but they are not.  Bears are considered to be “highly efficient hibernators,” and this type of winter sleep is known as torpor.
Our bears have already been filling up on food, storing up for the winter.  The bears are already preparing their straw-filled dens provided by IEAS.  However, we have a few self-sufficient bears who have already dug their own dens!  Greta and Crow are two American black bears that have dug their own dens purely off instinct!  Both have built their dens at the bases of trees which is typical behavior for black bears.  Two of our female brown bears have also followed their instincts digging their den on the side of a natural creek that runs through their habitat!
MAKE OUR CHRISTMAS WISHES
COME TRUE!


The animals of IEAS have made their Christmas list,
and they are hoping you will help make all their
wishes come true this year!


Please visit our  Giving Tree  at
www.bigcat.org/christmas-tree
to see what products made the list this year!
Pumpkin Fun
Along with our Emotional Enrichment Program, we also provide our resident animals with Behavioral Enrichment.  This enrichment consists of boomer balls of all sizes, tennis balls for the bobcats, tires, pickles and a variety of other enrichment items.  Seasonal enrichment days are something staff, interns, and the resident animals look forward to! The most recent seasonal enrichment we gave our animals was pumpkins!
For each pumpkin we gave our felines this year, we cut a hole and added a little “meat treat” inside, which consisted of Triple A Meat and a couple chicken necks. Adding the meat into the pumpkins this year caused different responses from the felines.  For some of our older residents, like Shauna a lioness, it made something that was routine for her new again! Shauna surprised us all with how interactive she was with her pumpkin, caring it around her habitat and ripping it apart to get to the meat inside.  For others, like Sajani a female Bengal tiger, adding the meat inside her pumpkin just caused her to be fixated on the meat. Where as last year, she played with the pumpkin like it was a new toy. Then of course you have the animals like Nala, a lioness, and Arusha, a female Bengal tiger, which seem to enjoy Emotional Enrichment a little bit more and come to the fence to welcome the people observing these enrichment days.
Not only do our felines get to enjoy pumpkin enrichment, our resident bears, coatis, lemur, and capybara get this seasonal enrichment as well!  However, unlike our felines where pumpkins are fun toys to play with and chew apart, these guys react to them in different ways.  Bears like to dig into them and eat all the insides, and sometimes they even roll on them and play with them in their pools.  Scoundrel has proven how much he enjoys the pumpkins.  Every year he is the first to snag a pumpkin to tear into.  This year was no different except he chose to drag his pumpkin to the shelter of his cave to enjoy.
Our resident capybara, Cappy, ate his pumpkin too; we did help him out a little by cutting the pumpkin half.  At the end of the day ALL of Cappy’s pumpkin was gone.  He ate every last bit of it!  For our coatis and ring-tailed lemur, we make the pumpkin into a bowl and add their fruit diets inside.  One of our coatis, Kodi, even tried to carry her pumpkin up a ramp and into her house, but the pumpkin proved too heavy for her, and she settled with enjoying it in a sunny part of her habitat!
In-kind Gifts/Donations
 
Some may think that staff and interns of IEAS will get a break during rainy days or winter days since there is not much we can do outside.  Well, we actually keep busy during these days by doing some very important office work…fundraising.  Now, fundraising doesn’t just include monetary grants.  We rely heavily on in-kind donations from private individuals and companies.  Christina, IEAS Keeper, and Michelle, IEAS Apprentice, have been taking advantage of all the rainy days this past summer and fall.  These two dedicated employees worked hard writing numerous proposals and in return, were rewarded with generous donations! 
We would like to recognize these caring, generous companies and individuals who have helped the animal residents of IEAS this past year:
Uline Shipping Supply Specialists
AmerCare
A thru Z Consulting Distribution
Swan Hose Company
Root-Lowell Manufacturing Company
Lubriplate Lubricants Company
Dr. Randy J Griffin
Dunn’s Produce
Lowe’s
Brookshires
Walmart
Rainbow Plant Sales
Costco
Heritage Church of Christ

 
We are so grateful to all of the caring individuals who believe in our cause and help us provide these magnificent animals with the best possible life that we can.
Thank you so much!
Ways You Can Contribute
IEAS understands the pressure put upon donors and caring supporters during this crucial time frame.  We would like to provide you with several options to assist in itemizing tax write-offs to not only benefit you but also help support the quality of living for our resident animals.  Here are some other ways you can help: 
 
Capital One


 
Are you a Capital One cardholder?  Capital One has developed the “No Hassle Giving Site” to provide Capital One cardholders with a convenient way to donate their favorite charities.  Go to the “Donate Now” section and type in International Exotic Animal Sanctuary into the “Find a Charity” field.  You can easily donate to the Sanctuary using your credit card, or you can even donate your rewards!  Just go to our website, www.bigcat.org, to find out more about it!
 
Tom Thumb


 
By linking your Tom Thumb Reward Card to the IEAS Account 2074through the Customer Service desk, the animals are also rewarded a percentage of the total cost of your purchase.
 
Kroger


 
For those who shop at Kroger, we’ve got an updated way to help the animals while you shop.  Kroger will donate a percentage of what you spend to IEAS!  Here’s how to sign up for the Kroger Community Rewards Program:
-Go to www.krogercommunityrewards.com
-Sign in using an existing account or create a new account
-Click “edit” under “Community Rewards”
-Find IEAS by searching “International Exotic Animal Sanctuary” or our ID “#80177
-Choose our organization and then click “Save” to complete your enrollment.
 
Good Search


 
Now with just the click of your mouse, you can raise one cent for the animals of IEAS. GoodSearch is a search engine which helps to raise money for charities. Simply go to www.goodsearch.com whenever you are searching the internet. Under the "Who do you GoodSearch for?" tab, type in “International Exotic Animal Sanctuary” and then click on the Verify button.  Just think...if 1,000 people made just 2 searches per day that would raise $7,300 a year for the Sanctuary!
 
iGive








 
iGive is an awesome shopping resource for you and for IEAS. iGive partners with almost 1,400 popular stores to bring donations to nonprofits, and by shopping through iGive, you can bring those donations to the Sanctuary animals! iGive works by providing participating stores with an avenue to make a donation based on your purchases at no cost to you! Essentially, each store will donate a percentage of what you spend to a nonprofit of your choice! Visit iGive.com and sign up to shop for IEAS (listed on iGive as "International Exotic Feline Sanctuary").

An even better idea? Download the iGive "Button!" This is an app that will automatically let you know when you are shopping at an iGive partnered store! It'll happen way more than you think - there are SO many stores to choose from, and it makes even less work for you! All you'll do is click "shop through iGive" when the button prompts you, and you'll be directed right back to your online store. Then, when you make a purchase, the store will donate to IEAS! Visit www.igive.com/button to find out more about the Button!

 
 
Amazon Smile


 
Do you like to shop on Amazon? Well, now all of your shopping can raise money for IEAS! By linking your Amazon account to IEAS through Amazon Smile, they will donate a percentage of each of your purchases to the Sanctuary! Just visit Amazon Smile directly and search for us (you will have to search for International Exotic Feline Sanctuary). Please keep in mind that now, instead of going to Amazon.com to shop, you'll always need to go to www.smile.amazon.com! Same shopping, more supporting!
Richard's Note
I would like to wish you all a Happy Holiday Season from everyone here at the International Exotic Animal Sanctuary.  Being a time for giving and being thankful, we thank each of you who have supported the Sanctuary over the years.  We hope that all of you have had the opportunity to visit the Sanctuary, check out our website or follow us on Facebook this year.  There are a lot of new faces to the IEAS family, and we would love for you to come meet them! 
On behalf of the International Exotic Animal Sanctuary and the animals, I respectfully request that you consider adding the Sanctuary to your Holiday list. Any donation will be greatly appreciated and will be used wisely for the animals. Our Sanctuary offers unique Christmas gift opportunities such as our Adopt an Animal Program or our Friends of the Feline and Buddy of the Bear Packets.  We hope, with your gift, the animals here at the Sanctuary have a wonderful Christmas.  I thank you for your help in achieving our goal of providing the best possible quality of life in captivity for our animal residents, and others to come, and for sharing the enormous responsibility of ensuring the survival of these wonderful beings for generations to come.
There are numerous ways one can give a gift to the animals: donations, in-kind donations, stock donations, adding IEAS to your will, shop using AmazonSmile and Kroger and Tom Thumb cards.  If you have that special animal, adoption is always a truly wonderful gift!  For more ideas on how you can help these deserving animals, check out “How to Help” on our web site, www.bigcat.org.
 
Remember, all donations are tax deductible, and if you need a donation letter for your 2015 donations or if you have any questions on how you can help, please contact me at 940-433-5091.

Please think of the animals this Holiday Season and the coming year!  I hope to see each of you in 2016 during your visit to the Sanctuary.  Have a safe and happy holiday season from your friends here at the International Exotic Animal Sanctuary!
 
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