A woman was jogging on a popular trail in Coquitlam, a city just east of Vancouver, British Columbia, when she got the shock of her life — a black bear slowly crossed her path and blocked her from moving forward. Showing no signs of aggression but rather curiosity, the gentle animal hesitantly reached out its paw and tapped the jogger’s leg. The bear then immediately turned away and made enough room for the jogger to pass. The woman safely descended the rest of the trail, and bystanders dispersed. Many animal lovers would call this an experience of a lifetime. But now, the B.C. Conservation Officer Service has set traps for the bear and have admitted that they might euthanize it!
This is not only an overreaction, but will do nothing in the long run to deter other bears from interacting with more humans. There are myriad other options that are more humane and more effective than euthanizing this innocent bear. Karelian Bear Dogs, for example, are hardworking pups who clear bears out of areas where they shouldn’t be for the safety of humans and bears alike. Bears like this one can be safely and happily relocated to habitats where they can still thrive while staying clear of humans. The city of Coquitlam could commit to public education around bear interactions and best practices. No matter what, this bear should not be killed. Please sign the petition today and implore B.C. conservation officers to have mercy on this poor bear who did not hurt anybody and relocate it to live a long, happy life free from human disturbance!