International Animal Rescue (IAR) is renowned for the incredible work they do saving vulnerable orangutans, slow lorises, macaques, and a wide range of other animals. Their efforts to help slow lorises involve tackling the exotic pet trade that has targeted these animals for their cuteness. The organization says, “the greatest threat to (slow loris’) survival is the illegal trade in wildlife. (The loris’) huge brown eyes and soft fur make this small nocturnal primate highly prized as a pet and the victim of an online craze created by videos on YouTube. Thousands of slow lorises are poached from the wild and illegally sold on the street or in animal markets.”

The video above shows two baby slow lorises named Warung and Pesar, who were lucky enough to be saved from this fate by the IAR team. When they were initially brought to the group’s rescue center, their new carers were saddened to realize that “had their teeth filed down” – a common procedure amongst all lorises who are sold as pets, to prevent them from biting their new “owners.”

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The pair were rescued from a market along with three adult lorises called Peyot, Ompong, and Kolot. Sadly, the three adult lorises were in a serious condition. All of them are dehydrated, their teeth have been cut off, and their mouths are infected. One of the females was pregnant while another was lactating – which led IAR carers to believe that she was feeding a baby who was torn away from her. All five lorises are being given medication to relieve their pain. However, IAR states that “the damage is irreversible, and it is unlikely that any of the adults will ever be well enough to return to the wild. It is deeply upsetting to see these amazing animals in such a poor state. ”

Although the pet slow loris videos we see online might seem cute, this is the sad reality of what these animals actually go through. Please think twice before buying into this fad and encourage others to get the facts and share this important story.