BLOOMINGDALE, N.J. — "We don't think he'll make it through another winter," said a Bloomingdale woman who as of Oct. 14 had collected 54,000 signatures to help find a home for a wandering bear forced to walk upright.
Pedals, who travels through various neighborhoods in the Oak Ridge and North Passaic area on his hind legs looking for food, is getting thinner and appears to be suffering, Lisa Rose-Rublack told Daily Voice.
A front paw is missing and another seems injured, forcing Pedals to walk upright and leaving him unable to run or climb.
The Orphaned Wildlife Center in Otisville, New York offered to build a habitat for Pedals.
A GoFundMe " Getting Pedals the Help He Deserves " fundraiser had amassed nearly $22,000 by Oct. 14.
Pedals can't be relocated however, without authorization from the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection Division of Fish and Wildlife.
Larry Hajna, a division spokesman, said biologists and officials have been monitoring the bear's condition and had no plans to move him just yet.
"Whenever possible, our goal is to let wildlife live in the wild," Hajna told Daily Voice, "and so we're going to have to assess the situation based on any new facts that we get."
Kerry Clair of the Orphaned Wildlife Center said she thinks a move would be best.
"We're really touched by the public outcry to help this bear," Clair said.
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