Singer allegedly kept bear as pet thinking it was a dog; arrested

Updated: Jun 17, 2019, 15:30 IST | mid-day online correspondent | Malaysia

The singer claims she found the cub at night time in a weak state by the side of the road and she took it home thinking it was a dog

Pic courtesy/facebook/Ida Shareena
Pic courtesy/facebook/Ida Shareena

A Malaysian singer got arrested for keeping a wild bear at home as a pet. However, during the investigation, she insisted that she thought it was a dog and not a sun bear. The singer identified as Zarith Sofia Yasin claimed in an interview that she found the bear nearly two weeks earlier and picked it up hoping to nurse it back to health.

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The incident came to light when someone shot and posted a video of the bear sticking its head out of the window crying out for help on social media site, Facebook. Following this, the Department of Wildlife and National Parks raided the singer's house in Kuala Lumpur and rescued the bear. 

"It was night time when I found the bear cub in a weakened state by the side of the road, and I thought it was dog!" the 27-year-old said in her defense. She also explained that she did not intend to break the law. "I know the bear cannot be reared, it can't be kept as a pet," she said. "I only wanted to save the bear, I had no intention of exploiting it."

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A post shared by Cik Pia (Zarith Sofia Yasin) (@oohhpiaa) onJun 8, 2019 at 11:36pm PDT

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According to The Star, the singer also added that she wanted to hand the bear, which she named Bruno, over to a zoo once it regained its strength. "It is true that I went home for Hari Raya - but I didn't let him starve, I left him some food," she told The Star. "I was worried about sending Bruno to the zoo (while he was ill) because the animals there look skinny."

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