Even though it is illegal to capture bears in both India and Pakistan, more than 1,600 sloth bears are being forced to dance by madaris, the people who capture and keep the bears.
For years sloth bear cubs in India have been poached and tortured through brutal training methods to become Dancing Bears, forced to perform for tourists. At less than 4 weeks of age, the cub is stolen from its mother who is often killed while trying to protect her cubs. Sold to traders and middlemen at underground markets, trauma, malnutrition and shock accounts for a mortality rate of more than 50%.
The surviving bear cubs are sold to Kalanders who will teach them to dance.
At the tender age of 4 months, the cubs canine teeth are knocked out. A red hot iron needle pierces its muzzle, and a coarse rope is pulled through. The wound is never allowed to heal, and the cub will live in fear, hunger and pain, tied to a stake for the rest of its life.
Many cubs die before the training begins because of the stress of capture, the terrible transportation conditions, starvation, dehydration, and rough handling. Although bears used in these acts would live up to 30 years in the wild, they rarely live more than eight years in captivity.
Source(s) - http://www.freethebears.org.au/bear-projects/india.html
As well as signing this petition, you can help free the bears by:
Writing a letter to to Overseas Governments using this website - http://getactive.peta.org/campaign/dancing_bears
Donate to the WSPCA - http://www.wspa.org.au/
And Sign a petition on the WSPCA website - http://www.wspa.org.au/
The bears need your help.