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Rapid Response for Animals

FOUR PAWS operates a rapid response, highly skilled expert unit equipped to help animals in the face of wars or in conflict zones.
Our team, of veterinarians, rescue workers and crisis managers, is trained to work under such circumstances and operating worldwide.

Our Work & Missions

2020
Lioness Kandaka receiving treatment

Mission in Sudan

In mid January, photos of famished lions in a zoo in Sudan circulated the globe and immediately caught our attention. Due to a lack of financial resources, the animals have been left to starve. We were there to help them.

2019

Mission in Lebanon

FOUR PAWS conducted a mission from 29th November to the 2nd December, in collaboration with 'Animals Lebanon'. Due to the ongoing instability in the country, both privately owned zoos lack the resources to take care of their suffering animals. After the approval from the authorities, the our team, consisting of wildlife veterinarians and animal keepers, travelled to Lebanon to support the two zoos with medical treatments and appropriate food. FOUR PAWS is currently working on a long-term solution for the animals. Watch our video! 

Declawed lioness in Gaza

Mission in Gaza

Over 40 animals were suffering in Rafah Zoo, Gaza. At the beginning of 2019, Gaza's oldest zoo attracted worldwide attention. Four lion cubs froze to death there due to the harsh weather and poor keeping conditions. Only a few weeks later, a 14-month-old lioness was permanently mutilated by the brutal and unprofessional removal of her claws. Almost 150,000 people demanded immediate action - and fortunately, we were able to follow that call. Read more about how we freed 47 animals their cages.

2018
Puppy before rabies vaccination

Pilot project protects animals and humans from life-threatening infections #DontWaitVaccinate

After two months of tireless efforts, the team has vaccinated 58,386 animals. The FOUR PAWS team in Myanmar is celebrating this partial victory against one of the deadliest diseases in the country. Read more why the fight against rabies is a long-term one.

2017

Mission in Iraq

According to OCHA, over 163,000 people were displaced by end of January 2017 due to military operations to retake Mosul from the Islamic Stat of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL). During this period, the zoo staff members were unable to enter the zoo. Nearly all animals  which were not killed by shrapnel, died of starvation or escaped.Simba the lion and Lula the bear – the only animals left alive in Mosul’s zoo – have been evacuated from the war-torn city. FOUR PAWS coordinated the rescue mission, taking Simba and Lula first to the nearby city of Erbil, from where they were flown to Jordan. Simba is now at LIONSROCK in South Africa, while Lula is still in Jordan at the Al Ma’wa for Nature and Wildlife Reserve, a partnership between Princess Alia Foundation and FOUR PAWS. Watch our video!

Bear being rescued from amusement park in Aleppo

Mission in Syria

War in Syria has not only forced millions of people to flee their homeland, claimed hundreds of thousands of victims and devastated the country. Countless animals have also lost their lives. The few survivors have vegetated for many months, some even years, in bombed-out zoos. Read more about how we rescued 13 animals from a destroyed the “Magic World” recreational park close to Aleppo.

2016
Tiger at Khan Younis Zoo in Gaza

Mission in Gaza

Years of suffering in desolate cages, starvation and a lack of freshwater: FOUR PAWS conducted an intensive rescue mission to save the remaining 15 animals at Khan Younis Zoo. The FOUR PAWS managed to load the animals and transport them over the border. Read more about the mission.

2015 and before

For more than 30 years the FOUR PAWS rapid response team has helped animals in need!

Amir Khalil remembers all of his missions very well: "We've been to Gaza five times, we've had missions in Egypt during the Arab Spring, Tripoli, Zimbabwe... and have helped several wild animal evacuations from Romania, Bulgaria and other zoos around the world."

Read more about our Missions

Blog Posts, Press Releases, Rescue Stories

Veterinarian Dr Frank Göritz in Khan Younis Zoo in the Gaza Strip

World Veterinary Day

Celebrate the world class vets at the helm of our emergency rescue missions


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FOUR PAWS takes care of neglected zoo animals in Lebanon

Animals urgently need food and medical treatment


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World Rabies Day: The ultimate fight against rabies in Myanmar continues

FOUR PAWS long-term project aims to vaccinate one million animals by 2022


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Two lions rescued from Gaza arrive at FOUR PAWS sanctuary in South Africa

Motan and Pisa finally get the chance to heal from their difficult past at LIONSROCK


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Big Cats from War Zones

In recent years, FOUR PAWS had several successful missions in rescuing big cats from war-torn countries such as Iraq, Gaza and Syria


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FOUR PAWS rescues 47 zoo animals from the Gaza Strip

The animals are taken to sanctuaries in Jordan and South Africa


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Animal torture: Lioness’ claws amputated with garden shears in Gaza's oldest zoo

FOUR PAWS demands permanent closure of zoo and relocation of 49 animals


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Al Ma'wa for Nature & Wildlife Reserve

Al Ma'wa for Nature & Wildlife Reserve

A partnership project between Princess Alia Foundation and FOUR PAWS in Jordan


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Amir Khalil in Sudan

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