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For Immediate Release: 11/24/08

Don't "monkey" around with holiday shopping — adopt one instead!

Sacramento, CA — Born Free USA united with Animal Protection Institute (Born Free USA), a leading wildlife conservation and advocacy organization, is taking the monkeying-around out of holiday shopping this year by offering the unique gift of a Primate Adoption.

The Born Free USA Primate Sanctuary cares for more than 500 primates —including snow monkeys, baboons, and vervets — many of whom were rescued from abusive situations in laboratories, roadside zoos and even as ‘pets’ in private homes. For just $52 per year, a Primate Adoption is a great gift for the person who has everything: the child with an interest in animals and wildlife or for someone who appreciates a gift that makes a difference.

“Adoption of a primate gives sanctuary residents the gift of a brighter tomorrow,” says Will Travers, Chief Executive Officer of Born Free USA. “What better way to make someone feel special this Holiday season than by changing an animal’s life for good? Without the Born Free USA Primate Sanctuary, many of our residents would have nowhere else to go, so these animals are truly getting a second chance at life.”

Many individuals are available for adoption, including:

Boon is a 16-year-old male olive baboon kept as a family pet and housed in a dark, rundown garage, where he lived a life of boredom and isolation. Lacking companionship and stimulation, he arrived in poor mental and physical condition, clutching a chewed-up child’s plastic toy. Frightened and withdrawn, Boon was self-mutilating. The lower half of his body was weak from lack of exercise and arthritis. Boon has made slow but steady progress at the sanctuary. He has finally learned how to be a baboon and was recently released into the Sanctuary’s large free-range enclosure as part of a free-living social group.

Carly is a female Japanese macaque, or Snow monkey, kept alone for years in a small cage in a windowless garage in Nevada. Carly had to be anesthetized while her cage was opened with bolt cutters, because there was no door. Carly was in terrible shape when she arrived at the Sanctuary, suffering from emotional distress and in terrible physical shape after having been fed primarily junk food. Carly’s rehabilitation has taken longer than many other rescued individuals. While she will never experience life as she was meant to, she is slowly finding out how to live life on her own terms.

Adoption of a primate gives Born Free USA the urgently needed funds to provide food, care, and rehabilitation to individual monkeys like Boon and Carly, and gives the lucky recipient a Primate Adoption Welcome Kit which includes a biography and full-color photo of the individual animal, a Certificate of Adoption, and a special gift, as well as the Sanctuary’s semi-annual newsletter, The Primate Post.

“This is one holiday gift that really will make things better. For just $1 a week it’s something to feel good about. If the animals could thank you – they would!” adds Travers.

Find out more about the Born Free USA Primate Sanctuary, including the primates profiled above, at www.bornfreeusa.org/sanctuary

Born Free USA is a national nonprofit animal advocacy organization working to end animal cruelty and exploitation through legislation, litigation and public education. For more information, visit www.bornfreeusa.org

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