Rescued! Big Cats, Lemurs, and Others Move to Sanctuary From Local Roadside Zoo

For Immediate Release:
February 1, 2022

David Perle 202-483-7382

Jamestown, Pa. – It’s retirement time for birds, lemurs, and three big cats: After PETA and the Animal Legal Defense Fund sued Pymatuning Deer Park, claiming that animals protected under the Endangered Species Act (ESA) have endured mistreatment there, the notorious roadside zoo is retiring every ESA-protected animal in its custody to The Wild Animal Sanctuary, a Global Federation of Animal Sanctuaries–accredited wildlife sanctuary. Bosco, an arthritic bear who has been kept in a concrete pit at Pymatuning for years, will be shifted to one of the facility’s now-vacated big-cat enclosures.

“At The Wild Animal Sanctuary, these rescued animals will be able to stretch their wings and legs, experience naturalistic habitats, and finally enjoy their lives,” says PETA Foundation Deputy General Counsel for Captive Animal Law Enforcement Brittany Peet. “PETA celebrates this move and won’t give up until every animal at this roadside zoo is moved to a proper home that meets their needs.”

PETA and the Animal Legal Defense Fund will continue to pursue their ESA claims as well as their additional claims alleging that Pymatuning’s mistreatment of all the animals there constitutes a public nuisance under state law. The groups are asking the court to issue an order that the remaining animals be sent to reputable facilities. More information about the claims is available here.

In addition to these animals, 75 big cats, 76 bears, 19 chimpanzees, and many other wild and exotic animals have been rescued from roadside zoos across the country as a result of PETA’s lawsuits and advocacy.

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to use for entertainment”—opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview. For more information, please visit or follow the group on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram.

The Animal Legal Defense Fund was founded in 1979 to protect the lives and advance the interests of animals through the legal system. For more information, please visit

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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind