Wild animals are amazing, and we love stories with them, seeing how they live their life in their natural habitat, free. Here is the story of Tuffy, one of the many bears that got the chance of living free in nature. His journey was followed by millions of people on the Internet, helping save others and raise awareness.

14. Checking the Surroundings

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The bear was finally ready to go out and discover a new life. He was given round-the-clock care and a lot of space to roam. Then, they let him get closer to the pool, and the cameras started rolling.

13. He Spotted the Pool

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Animals Asia posted on their website and YouTube channel the moment when Tuffy first approached the pool. It was the first time in his life getting close to a body of water. Where he lived for nine years he barely touched water, and that was only for drinking.

His reaction made millions of people cry happy tears…

12. Splashing Around

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As soon as Tuffy got out on the grass, he headed towards the pool and slowly submerged. The volunteers were filming the moment, wondering what would happen next. But they had no idea that Tuffy was going to make this moment unforgettable.

11. An Unforgettable Moment

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Animals Asia posted this video which immediately went viral, and for a good reason. You can see Tuffy jumping up and down in the pool, splashing around and enjoying this oasis. He’s never seen so much water in his life!

10. The Oasis

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The bear was finally letting it go, enjoying himself as if he’s done this thousands of time before. On their website, Animals Asia wrote:

“His carers caught the moment of glee at discovering the pool. He slapped the water, splashed himself, jumped up and down before finally succumbing to slipping under the water as he let it wash away his pain.” But what happened next?

9. He Was Free!

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“His joy struck a chord around the world,” wrote Animals Asia. And the first few days and nights at the sanctuary, Tuffy was so happy to be free that he didn’t want to go back to his den. The bear slept under the stars… Then, he met other bears!

8. A New Life

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“Coming from years of little or no water, for Tuffy this must feel like a true oasis after being parched and in pain for so long,” Animals Asia Bear Manager Louise Ellis said on their website. This new life was an improvement over the hard metal bars of his farm cage…

7. Tuffy Made Friends

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Tuffy got stronger over time, ate a lot and swam whenever he wished. He even made friends, added Ellis: “He has suffered so much, and that suffering can’t be erased overnight. Although with access to friends and sunshine, Tuffy’s life has become better and better every single day.”

6. Still Remembering His Past

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Although he might still remember his past and prefer from time to time to be alone, Tuffy also chills around the sanctuary and plays with other 15 bears that come from the same traumatic histories at the farms. But his story did more than make people cry – things started to change in Vietnam!

5. Eradicating Bear Bile Farming

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More and more people found about Tuffy’s story and people around the world helped Animals Asia fight against the bear bile farms. Volunteers and scientists gathered and talked to people about alternatives to traditional medicine and why torturing these animals is useless and cruel. Then, things got even better!

4. The Bears Move To Sanctuaries

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Tuffy and other bears like him now roam the sanctuaries and live a good life. The Vietnamese government is banning bear bile treatments by 2020, eradicating the farms by 2022. Soon, all these bears will move to sanctuaries!

3. A New Home

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Thanks to making this story heard around the world, Animals Asia is proud that Tuffy enabled them to save many more bears and put an end to this cruel activity. Almost after a decade of living in cages, Tuffy can now live a better life…

2. Tuffy’s Story

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In a touching statement, Animals Asia founder Jill Robinson said about Tuffy who has no idea that his story “has led millions of people to the campaign to end bear bile farming. For Tuffy and for thousands of bears like him who have suffered – we will end this cruelty.”

1. An Inspiration for Everyone

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“For many years in that cage, Tuffy must have thought the world had forgotten him but there were always people out there who cared. Now, he’s home with us, and has no idea that his innocent happiness has been an inspiration,” concluded the founder. Thanks to these amazing people, moon bears can finally live in peace!