Their cages would flood so badly, they would nearly drown.
For an entire decade, two brown bears named Misha and Dasha were imprisoned in a tiny cage in an Armenian restaurant.
The two served as tourist attractions, and they spent their days pacing back and forth, trying to relieve their boredom.
They would often bang their heads against the cage or climb the bars — anything to bring a little joy into their lives.
To make things worse, the cage was located right on a riverbank, and their cage often flooded.
Once, the water rose so high the poor bears almost drowned.
“A few years back, the river flooded and the bears almost drowned,” Lis Key, PR and communications manager for International Animal Rescue, told The Dodo.
“As you can see from the rescue photos, the rescue team had to cut through the cages to release them, so they must have been trapped when the river flooded and in serious danger of drowning.”
For years, International Animal Rescue (IAR) tried to save these two bears.
Finally, IAR and the Foundation for the Preservation of Wildlife and Cultural Assets (FPWC) convinced the restaurant owners to release the bears into their care.
IAR’s rescue team cut through the metal cage’s bars and freed the two bears.
They sedated the bears and brought them to their mountainside sanctuary, where they would finally have the freedom to roam and follow their instincts.
Soon after arriving at the sanctuary, Misha and Dasha went into a cave to hibernate for winter.
And when they emerged in the spring, they weren’t alone.
Dasha had given birth to two happy and healthy cubs.