What happens after a bear wanders into a drugstore? A bear cub walking through a Rite Aid store in Ashland, Oregon (AP Photo / Robin Bishop)
What happens after a bear wanders into a drugstore?
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A black bear cub found wandering the aisles of a drugstore will be raised with the goal of releasing her into the wild next year.

Police scooped the cub into a shopping basket Sunday at a Rite-Aid store in Ashland. Shoppers took video on their smartphones.

The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife said the bear has been taken to the PAWS Wildlife Center in Lynnwood, Washington. Director Jennifer Convy says rehabilitation staff care for bears with hands-off methods designed to mimic conditions in the wild. These conditions maintain an animal's fear of people.

The department says it hopes to release the bear somewhere in southern Oregon next spring.

According to KGW-TV, veterinarians estimate the cub, which weighs 13 pounds, to be only about a couple of months old. Biologists don't know what happened to her mother. The local bear population is healthy, so bear sightings are common in the area, but no recent sow deaths have been reported, according to ODFW.

Initially, authorities said it would not be possible to return the cub to the wild, because of her contact with humans. The veterinarians at PAWS feel she has a chance with the right kind of rehabilitation.

"Bears are given diets filled with natural foods they would normally forage for in the wild," said Jennifer Convy, PAWS wildlife director. "Rehabilitated bears maintain their natural fear of humans and don't become habituated to people."

Critical thinking challenge: Why should bears be afraid of people? If bears are afraid of people, are they less likely to wander into drugstores?

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COMMENTS (449)
  • 21hlmich
    10/28/2014 - 11:59 a.m.

    I'm glad that the bear didn't get killed and got put in PAWS Wildlife Center in Lynnwood instead.It seems very interesting.It is also very FUNNY!

  • 21gaware
    10/28/2014 - 12:06 p.m.

    I think that bears should be afraid of people because people could kill the bear, or have hatred for the bear. I think that bears belong in the wild, not in drugstores. But if bears are afraid of people, they maybe they will stay away or keep their distances with people and stores.

  • 21edsode
    10/28/2014 - 12:09 p.m.

    Maybe the cub had a cold and decided to look for some Tylenol in the drug store. Maybe he just needs some energy booster from just being born. He must be so tired from that long walk to the drugstore.

  • 21wtmadd
    10/28/2014 - 12:10 p.m.

    First of all, how did a CUB get in the drugstore? Did they have sensor door and it just walked in like no big deal? Personally I'd run super speed out the door if I saw a cub. It would be cool at first but like how did the mom let the cub go. So weird. I have a lot of questions for this article.

  • 21zfmcro
    10/28/2014 - 12:11 p.m.

    I think if bears were more afraid of humans they would be less likely to wander into cities and stores. there would also be less likely for people to be attacked by bears.

  • 21jtmyer
    10/28/2014 - 12:13 p.m.

    How did the cub get in the store and not to be seen.I think it followed some body in the store and was not seen until some one saw it in the shopping ilea.

  • xavierw-Ven
    10/28/2014 - 12:33 p.m.

    This is so funny! The bear must have a cold and decided to pick up some vicks. It's so funny and cute and also very weird at the same time. I'm glad that the bear was caught and taken somewhere nice

  • elliotja-Fre
    10/28/2014 - 12:56 p.m.

    A bear in a drugstore, how do let that happen. What i really want to know is that, why did it go into the store into the first place. I don't know why to mother of the cub wasn't there for her cub. I'm glad that the PAWS foundation rescued the cub and is now going to help it grow before it can go back into the wild. Some of the foundations are helpful like this one. THANKS PAWS!!!

  • JH2001skate
    10/28/2014 - 12:59 p.m.

    bears should be afraid of people because if there not they will go into stores and houses easily. We will also see them a lot more in streets and other places

  • ce2001sparkle
    10/28/2014 - 01:00 p.m.

    Bears should be afraid of people because people have weapons and the power of hurting or even killing the bear. They are less likely to wander into a drugstores because they know what people can do.

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