MILLMONT– Actor, Alec Baldwin, is joining PETA in a call for action against those responsible for the neglect of Dillan the Bear at the Union County Sportsmen’s Club. In a letter to Governor Tom Wolf, Baldwin urges the Governor to press charges for cruelty to animals and neglect over Dillan’s mistreatment over the years.
After a vigorous PETA campaign that Baldwin publicly supported, Dillan was released from the Millmont club in January. He was taken to the Wild Animal Sanctuary in Colorado where he underwent dental surgery within weeks of his arrival. Baldwin points out the extreme dental issues and obesity that the Asiatic black bear suffered while in the custody of the Sportsmen’s Club.
Baldwin is also asking the Governor to release the remaining animals being held at the Club to accredited facilities, to include raccoons, deer, and a bobcat. He says Dillan’s story has garnered national attention and asked Governor Wolf to “show the public that Pennsylvania will not stand for this cruelty.”
WKOK has contacted the Union County Sportsmen’s Club for comment.
Balwin’s full letter to Governor Wolf is below:
August 13, 2020
The Honorable Thomas Wolf
Governor of Pennsylvania
Dear Gov. Wolf,
First, kudos on launching Pennsylvania’s violence data dashboard. I hope it catches on in other states.
I’m writing to thank you once more for freeing Dillan, the sickly Asiatic black bear stuck in a cage for years in Millmont. I’m also writing to urge you to ensure that justice is served in this case. Dillan was rescued more than six months ago from the Union County Sportsmen’s Club, and despite overwhelming evidence, his abusers still haven’t been charged with cruelty to animals and neglect over Dillan’s mistreatment. An example must be set to help other animals stuck in similarly shoddy situations.
Dillan is now living at The Wild Animal Sanctuary in Colorado, where within his first three weeks, he underwent dental surgery to treat the painful issues that he’d suffered from for years at the club. What veterinarians found was shocking. <https://www.peta.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/07/Veterinary-Dental-Report-Dillan-Asiatic-Black-Bear.pdf> Dillan had to have 12 teeth pulled and a root canal. An infected abscess in his mouth was so advanced that pus was draining through a hole that had bored through his gums. The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) first cited the club over its failure to address his severe dental concerns three years ago, yet the club did nothing to alleviate his pain and suffering.
At the time of his surgery, Dillan was morbidly obese. He weighed 857 pounds-which is more than two and a half times the normal weight for a male Asiatic black bear. The club knowingly confined him in a harmful, inadequate environment and continued to feed him a poor diet even after the USDA repeatedly cited it for these failures beginning in July 2017.
The club willfully subjected this bear to years of agony while infection grew in his mouth almost as quickly as he gained weight. It’s a miracle that he survived. What the club failed to do in three years, the sanctuary did in less than three weeks. There is no excuse for the club’s cruel mistreatment of Dillan, and it must be held accountable.
I respectfully ask that you use your power to ensure that Dillan’s longtime abusers are brought to justice. His story has garnered national attention. Please show the public that Pennsylvania will not stand for this cruelty, and please insist that the animals who remain in the club’s custody be released to accredited facilities. Thank you.
Very truly yours,