Illegal Pet Trade

Double Your Donation to CCF

  • by Dr. Laurie Marker August 3, 2021
Double Your Donation to CCF

The photo at the top of this page is from our Cheetah Safe House in Somaliland. The cubs were taken from the wild when they were very young and were on their way to be sold illegally as pets when they were confiscated by Somaliland’s Ministry of Environment and Rural Development (MoERD).

If they had been left in the wild, these cubs would live very different lives. They would be free to grow up as wild cheetahs – mating, hunting and fighting for the best territory or raising cubs of their own and ranging over the landscape. Sadly, due to multiple factors they cannot be released.

In Namibia, we have had many successes in rehabilitating orphaned and injured cheetahs and releasing them back into the wild. Release candidates are older, healthy cubs that are not acclimated to people. Thanks to your support, we have developed a methodology and a set of protocols that allows released cheetahs to achieve independence at a success rate of 75 – 96%!

The cubs in Somaliland were taken from their mothers when they were very young. Due to the improper care and nutritional deficiencies they experienced before their confiscation, many of them have physiological problems and debilitating diseases that will require a lifetime of care.

Your support helps us to provide a lifetime of expert medical care for the cheetahs living at our Centres. Your support also funds the programming that addresses the three main threats to the species – habitat loss, human-wildlife conflict and illegal wildlife trade. Keeping cubs like these from ever being taken from the wild is our goal – we are grateful for your help.

Please donate during Chewbaaka’s Wild Cheetah Challenge. Every contribution made between now and August 31st, 2020, will automatically double in size — up to $225,000, thanks to our generous Chewbaaka Challenge donors (listed below). Your gift today will make twice the impact, enabling CCF to continue to grow our research, education, and conservation programs. Please donate today.

Chewbaaka's Wild Cheetah Challengers

Brown & Brown Insurance | Bruce G. Geary Foundation | The Berman Family Philanthropic Fund | The Capital Group | Overall Family Foundation | Polly Horton Hix Foundation | Brookes H. Browne | Jenny Cordina | Sally F. Davidson | Jason & Jodee Ferree | Bert & Candee Forbes | Steve & Florence Goldby | Susan Janin | James Poley & Joyce Kaneshiro | Richard & Darcy Kopcho | Leslie Litton | George S. Loening | Elizabeth Marquart | Jamie McCullough | Thomas Moore III | George Ohrstrom | Caitlin & JP Pollack | Marci Rubin | Adina Savin | Dr. Roswitha Kima Smale | Katherine O. & James Snowden | Angela Weisskopf

Double Your Donation

CCF's Most Famous Ambassador

At CCF, Chewbaaka represented his species to more than 100,000 CCF visitors in his 16-year lifetime, and he appeared in countless documentaries and television shows viewed in many countries around the world. Chewbaaka helped humans gain a better understanding of the ecological importance of the cheetah, and he also helped change Namibian farmers’ perception of cheetahs, encouraging them to peacefully coexist with cheetahs and other predators. Also, Chewbaaka and six wild cheetahs from Tanzania and Namibia provided the genetic material used in a 2015 Genomic Legacy study published in Genome Biology – BMC Journal.

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