Skip to Main Content

Happily Ever After for Boudreaux the Bear

Written by Jennifer O'Connor | May 15, 2014

Last year, a whistleblower let us know that a black bear named Boudreaux was being held in a tiny, dark indoor cage without access to the outdoors at the Louisiana Purchase Gardens and Zoo … and that he’d been there for nearly four years.

We immediately filed a complaint with the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). The documents that we requested from the agency’s subsequent inspection revealed that Boudreaux had been denied sunshine and fresh air for a “prolonged period of time.” To add to his despair, Boudreaux’s windowless cage was situated so that he could see through a crack that another bear at the roadside zoo was spending time outdoors.

Prompted by our complaint as well as another one that we sent to state authorities, Boudreaux was transferred to The Wild Animal Sanctuary in Colorado.

At the sanctuary, Boudreaux is coming out of his shell. He is getting used to feeling grass under his feet and is exploring and enjoying the freedom to do whatever he wants. He loves water and spends lots of time splashing and playing. Grapes, watermelon, and avocados are his favorite treats, and his coat is developing a lovely sheen.

Boureaux the Bear (1)

Boudreaux has the company of six other bears and is still getting to know everyone. He also has a cozy den all to himself when he wants some “me” time.

Boudreaux the Bear (3)

What You Can Do

The Louisiana Purchase Gardens and Zoo’s Animal Welfare Act license has lapsed. Please join us in asking the USDA ( not to issue the zoo a new license, based on its abysmal treatment of Boudreaux and other apparent violations pointed out by a person who recently visited the facility.

Commenting is closed.
  • Dotti says:

    I am so happy for Boudreaux, however, there are other animals there who are all alone and living in miserable conditions, pacing, and trying to get out of a small cage. I really hope we can help them.

  • This is a great story. I am so happy for the bear, now that he is free! It’s awful that someone can treat an animal that way and not even let them see the sun for that long! Some people nowadays just blow me away by their cruelty

  • As I read this post I had to stop to wipe away some tears 🙂 This happens quite often. Sometimes when I see animal suffering, but mostly when I they are free in the wild. Those small victories really make my day.
    I am slowly starting to get involved, and also eliminating animal products in my life. I am glad that mysterious ways brought me some awareness. I grew up eating meat and going to the zoo, however, I am sure humanity will not tolerate this behavior in the future. I have to say I am thrilled that organizations like PETA exist, and that you fight everyday for the rights of those who do not have a voice. Seeing some of this animals being saved is a feeling I can not describe in words. Thank you!!!

    • Julie Parnell says:

      I am so glad I joined Peta. It has opened my eyes to all the suffering and cruelty.
      I am now a Vegan. I couldnt possibly eat meat or fish, knowing what I now know. Seeing the animals being saved is fantastic and brings me tears of joy. HOPE WE CAN SAVE THEM ALL EVENTUALLY.