Tuffy was rescued last September from a bear bile farm and brought to Animal Asia’s Vietnam sanctuary.
Bears are kept in bear bile farms in tiny cages which often prevent them from standing or sitting upright.
They are kept in captivity to harvest their bile, a digestive fluid produced by the liver and stored in the gallbladder, which is used in traditional medicine.
The bile is harvested through surgery and a significant amount of bears die because of the stress of unskilled surgery or infection.
Some bears are reportedly caught as cubs and kept in these conditions for their entire lives.
When Tuffy came to Animal Asia’s Vietnam sanctuary he had spent most of his life in a small cage, with little or no water. He also required several surgeries.
Animals Asia stated: “The vet team has been working hard to rehabilitate him after years of having his bile extracted. In fact his gall bladder was so damaged it had to be removed. Examinations had found numerous gallstones, meaning he’d lived in pain for years.”
According to Animals Asia, there are still around 1,200 bears in bile farms in Vietnam and over 10,000 more in China.