Will the Idaho AG Crack Down on a Fake Sanctuary?

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Yellowstone Bear World is a hellhole for bears: It breeds them, tears cubs away from their mothers, and forces them into stressful, exploitative encounters with the public. If decent people knew the truth about Yellowstone Bear World, they’d never support this terrible business.

That’s why we fired off a letter to Idaho Attorney General Raúl R. Labrador calling on him to investigate Yellowstone Bear World for several apparent violations of the Idaho Consumer Protection Act.

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Yellowstone Bear World Misleads Consumers With Charity Buzzwords

When you think of a charitable fundraiser, you might imagine an event that raises funds for a noble cause, such as supporting open-admission animal shelters or purchasing cruelty-free dissection resources for schools. Wouldn’t you feel lied to and cheated if you donated to a “fundraiser” and someone pocketed the money for personal gain?

Well, that’s exactly what Yellowstone Bear World is doing. It’s a for-profit breeding operation, yet it has routinely referred to its exploitative photo ops as “fundraisers.”

And that’s just the beginning of the deception. In numerous instances, the business has marketed itself as a “sanctuary” and assured the public that the bears remain there for life—even going so far as to make false statements about the fates of specific bears in response to questions about them. Public records show that since 2012, the facility has transferred nearly 100 bears to Gregg Woody, a notorious exotic-animal dealer who has a documented history of sending dozens of bears to slaughter.

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A cub at Yellowstone Bear World—deprived of the opportunity to nurse from their mother—attempts to nurse on an employee’s arm. Credit: PETA

“This operation traumatizes mother bears and their cubs, selling them to seedy animal dealers with zero regard for their fate, which may mean their eventual slaughter,” says PETA Foundation Director of Captive Animal Welfare Debbie Metzler. “PETA is urging the attorney general to prevent Yellowstone Bear World from duping the public into unwittingly supporting its cruel and exploitative enterprise.”

Customers Feel Duped by Yellowstone Bear World

The complaint also notes that according to the Madison County Parcel Map, the vast majority of Yellowstone Bear World’s publicly accessible facilities fall within 45.5 acres—less than half the size the drive-through park claims to be in promotional materials. In one Yelp review, a customer describes Yellowstone Bear World as “the epitome of false advertising,” noting the relatively small area adult bears have to roam, and official numbers suggest that over 80 bears are imprisoned there within a 20-acre area.

The business has received dozens of other one-star reviews in which visitors highlight the horrible truth about the shoddy facility, expressing intense disgust and regret for having supported it.

PETA Already Unmasked This Operation In 2022.

A 2022 PETA undercover investigation into Yellowstone Bear World documented that a supervisor at the facility threatened to throw one of the cubs across the room and rip out her teeth; a cub with a broken leg was denied prescribed treatment; and infant cubs attempted to nurse on the chins, necks, fingers, and arms of staff—a behavior often seen in animals prematurely separated from their mothers.

Help Bears at Yellowstone Bear World!

Countless bears have suffered because of Yellowstone Bear World and its misleading marketing. Please take a moment to defend the dozens of bears who remain in misery at this wretched facility:

Help Bears!

Crying bear at yellowstone photo op

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