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Born Free launches appeal for ex-circus lioness in Italy
Born Free and LAV were able to remove Elsa from the circus in 2014 and place her in a wildlife sanctuary.

Charity asks for support to provide lifetime care

International wildlife charity Born Free has announced a new appeal called Elsa Italia, with the aim of providing lifetime care for an ex-circus lioness in Italy.

The lioness, named Elsa, was forced to perform with a travelling circus in Sardinia for a number of years. She lived in extremely poor conditions, and was kept in a small cage in a concrete car park.

In 2014, Born Free worked with Italian animal organisation Lega Anti Vivisezione (LAV) to remove Elsa from the circus. As a temporary measure, she was placed in a wildlife sanctuary in northern Italy.

Finally, a breakthrough in the ongoing court case came in 2018, which meant Elsa was permitted to be removed from the terms of the case and could finally be permanently rehomed.

Born Free’s original plan was to move Elsa to its big cat sanctuary in Shamwari Private Game Reserve in South Africa. However, visits and discussions with staff at the Italian sanctuary revealed that Elsa was content where she was and the decision was made for her to remain in Italy.

Maggie Balaskas, Born Free’s animal rescue and care manager explains: “It’s clear that she is thriving at the sanctuary in Italy and we believe she will be happiest remaining where she is. Last year Elsa was introduced to a male lion called Madiba, who she had being living alongside for a number of years. Madiba was also rescued from inadequate captive conditions and part of a different court case. The two have become great companions for each other.”

Born Free is asking for support to continue to provide a safe home and ongoing care for the lioness. The charity estimates this will cost around €12,000 a year.

More information can be found on the Born Free website.

Image (c) Born Free.

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Celebrity chefs urge public to get baking to support Cats Protection fundraiser

News Story 1
 In support of Cats Protection's Pawsome Afternoon Tea fundraiser, Masterchef winner Tim Anderson and Great British Bake Off star Kim-Joy have shared biscuit recipes to help keen bakers raise money for needy cats across April.

The celebrity chefs are both cat owners and have said that they hope this fundraiser will help to raise awareness of cats in need and the importance of adopting a cat, rather than buying one.

This is the fourth year Cats Protection has run its Pawsome Afternoon Tea campaign, which encourages people to hold tea parties, bake sales and fundraising events to help raise money for the charity.

To view the recipes and other fundraising resources please visit the Cats Protection website. 

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BEVA offering free membership to vet students

The British Equine Veterinary Association (BEVA) is offering free membership to veterinary students. As part of a new initiative with the aim of encouraging more veterinary professionals into equine practice.

According to BEVA, less than one in ten veterinary students choose to work in equine practice. The association hopes that this initiative will provide insight into the field and the benefits of a career in equine medicine.

Benefits of membership include:
▪ access to a network of nearly 3,000 members
▪ special student rates to attend BEVA Congress
▪ online access to BEVA's Equine Veterinary Education (EVE) journal
▪ free access to the association's online learning platform
▪ free access to BEVA's practical veterinary apps
▪ exclusive discounts on a range of things from cinema tickets to grocery shopping.

BEVA will be releasing a series of short videos over the next few months from BEVA Council members, explaining what inspired them to work in equine practice.

Image (c) BEVA.