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'What has enabled Russia to rise among the great powers of the world…has been the conquest of Siberia'
W.Bruce Lincoln

Hunters around Russia rally against proposed ban on bear baiting

By The Siberian Times reporter
05 January 2018

Yakutian huntsmen said the new draft law threatens traditional dog breeding.

Russia has about 200 officially registered baiting stations. Picture: Spiridon Sleptsov

Critics of the new law passed by the Russian State Duma, or parliament, but declined by the Federation Council, the upper house, took to streets in Moscow, St Petersburg and Yakutsk.

So-called baiting stations are used to train dogs by allowing them to chase chained brown bears, wolves, foxes, raccoons, boars and martens to develop and polish their hunting skills. 

Multiple allegations have been made that wild animals were being abused at such stations, leading to deputies initiating the new law. 

The law would force  owners of such stations to install a mesh or glass fence to prevent physical contact between wild animals and dogs.

It would also ban dogs not classified as hunting animals from training at baiting stations.

Hunters around Russia rally against proposed  ban on bear baiting

Hunters around Russia rally against proposed  ban on bear baiting

Hunters around Russia rally against proposed  ban on bear baiting

On 21 December, the State Duma passed the law banning baiting stations. Pictures: Spiridon Sleptsov

‘A dog can only be taught at a baiting station’, said Zakira Ivanova, chairman of Yakutia Hunters and Fishermen Societies. 

‘Working with a mesh or glass fence would never allow a dog to understand how to hunt.’

‘We stand with hunters all around Russia for the correct hunting and traditional dog breeding. 

‘Every hunter is a defender of forest and nature, and a correctly trained dog is a guarantee of success and safety.’

On 21 December, the State Duma passed the law banning baiting stations, with 408 deputies voting in favour, two against, and three abstaining. 

Hunters around Russia rally against proposed  ban on bear baiting

Hunters around Russia rally against proposed  ban on bear baiting

Hunters around Russia rally against proposed  ban on bear baiting
Hunters and dog breeders took to streets in Yakutsk to protest against baiting stations ban. Pictures: YSIA

Russia has about 200 officially registered baiting stations, with rules of dog training on wild animals approved by the Federation of Hunting Dogs.

‘Baiting stations train dogs regardless of the season, they work primarily for the benefit of wild animals,’ said Yelena Gorbunova, head of the Women Hunting Club And Its Friends. 

‘A badly trained dog might not only spoil hunting, but let a wounded animal go, making it suffer for days. 

‘During training, contact between wild animals and dogs occurs under control, so that they don’t injure each other. 

‘Medical help is given instantly in case of emergency, and wild animals are the priority in receiving it.

‘Wild animals are kept in very good conditions, they are well fed, they receive timely vaccinations.’


Gorbunova emphasised that people started using wild animals to train dogs since beginning of hunting, stressing this is part of human history. 

‘I stand against a sadistic attitude to wild animals, but don’t mix an official baiting station with a bastard who keeps wild animals in his garage for the sake of fun. 

‘No sane hunter would do it', she stressed. 

A ban on baiting stations would raise a risk of people going undercover, she said, leaving no control over way of how baiting will be done. 

Protests went ahead amid fears that the new law could still be enacted despite the Federation Council sending it back to the Duma.

Pictures below: Yelena Gorbunova, and pictured of various baiting stations provided by  

Hunters around Russia rally against proposed  ban on bear baiting

Hunters around Russia rally against proposed  ban on bear baiting

Hunters around Russia rally against proposed  ban on bear baiting

Hunters around Russia rally against proposed  ban on bear baiting

Comments (23)

I actually thought Russians were tough strong men, but this is the actions of cowards. Pathetic.
Steve, Wales uk
04/02/2022 23:58
The brains of animals and humans are very similar in regions for emotion such as the terror these animals would feel. Teaching people that this is acceptable in any way teaches us that this cruelty is okay and can be generalized to people.

If you stand over an animal to kill it with a knife you have shown you are insecure and vile enough to think that any sort of unnecessary unfair fight is an act of manhood rather than an act of abuse. It says nothing other than you are capable of inflicting suffering unnecessarily.

In this way Islamic law which prohibits anything like this is ahead of christian doctrine. No need to kill for sport or harassment. We don't need to use cruelty as entertainment.
Jennifer Casey, Dover NH
03/05/2021 22:57
I don't understand why this is considered cruel. It's just animals that otherwise would be hunted in the wild. In there they are fed and taken care of much better than in the harsh wilderness.
Axel, Stockholm, Sweden
30/11/2020 01:40
‘Medical help is given instantly in case of emergency, and wild animals are the priority in receiving it.

‘Wild animals are kept in very good conditions, they are well fed, they receive timely vaccinations" WHAT A CROCK OF S@#T!!! These poor animals are abused daily and are certainly NOT cared for and rarely receive food and water let alone medical attention. These sick bastards should be tied up themselves and they best hope they never run in to me, if they own dogs they should realise how an animal lives and breeds PLEASE PLEASE BAN THESE DISGUSTING ACTS OF PURE CRUELTY
Emma, UK
08/12/2019 14:53
Ahhh, come on guys, I thought only Americans did these foolish things. If you really need to kill something, take a knife, track it, and pick an honest fight. Only then can you stand over a dead animal and call yourself brave. Honestly, I thought only stupid people here in the US were capable of calling themselves "hunters" by behaving in such ways. Do better, yah? Get to know these animals. They have families and lives of their own which we are losing the wisdom of. Do better than this.
edy kubiak, arcata california USA
28/09/2018 14:13
Are these still going on? Its the sickest of the sick. These "people" are indescribable.
Michael, USA
18/03/2018 11:03
How can we help stop this heinous act? This is the lowest of lows. The sickest of the mentally ill.
Lori Sandford , Mission, BC
07/02/2018 14:23
Keep the ban by all means! Use the hunters as baits instead of torturing poor innocent animals. These people are disgusting cowards! Revolting ...
Jean-Jacques Rosa, Paris, France
15/01/2018 20:18
This is absolute bull, you do not by any means have to have this cruelty as a way to train these dogs. I am I hunter myself and this disgusts me. This ban should happen and these dogs should be trained differently. There is nothing a person can say to justify this.
Nick , USA
12/01/2018 15:23
This is not training this is a waste of life, these animals feel pain and they feel terror. Imagine how it would feel to be chained by unfamiliar beings and left unable to protect yourself as they order their pets to attack you. How would it feel to be held down as they let these dogs tear at your throat. These animals can feel their life being taken from them. This isn't a necessary or even sensible practicet but with comments like "well done" and "bravo" it seems like this is some sick twisted entertainment? Think what impact these actions will have. Killing for sport and bragging rights hardly seems manly. And if it is for food then do the right thing and hunt yourself, there is no need to subject house pets to attack chained animals.
Gretta Schneider, Canada
12/01/2018 11:29
These people who tie up innocent animals as scumbags! I quote,’badly trained dogs will ruin hunting and leave an animal o suffer for days.’ Then this creature goes on to say, and I quote again, ‘these wild animals are kept in very good condition.’ VERY GOOD CONDITION??!? Are you serious, they are beaten daily, hourly by people and dogs. Watching that video disgusted me, I noticed on animal was being held by the tail while a dog was brutally attacking it and at first it put up a fight, well, it shrugged about and made it difficult for the dog but then it gave up, it accepted death..

I will happily let these torture station go ahead, but only if the people it’s run by let me tie them to some rope and let a bear brutally or fox or even their own dogs brutally attack them, but don’t worry you’ll be in very good conditions and will get fed daily, beat daily and also sleep in a 2x2 box or outside in a chain. Don’t worry if you get hurt we have Medicaid teams on standby.
Jason, Canada
12/01/2018 04:18
This method of hunting is abuse. Clear evidence shows people shielding an animal from protecting itself! Holding one hostage to be mauled for "practice" is insane. literally holding down animals faces and letting others draw blood! Dog's are not ment for hunting. Use your own hands. Not another soul. Cruelty to animals!!!!! Mentally ill hunters.
Angelie Albritton, United States
12/01/2018 04:12
Animal abuse, which this is, should not be tolerated. Teaching dogs or any other animal to kill another is wrong. Old traditions have to be stopped. We no longer live in caves, we have evolved as humans. It is time to prove this. Practices such as this, eating cats and dogs, torturing animals, whether tame or wild should no longer be allowed. People who participate int his should be prosecuted.
Kelly Sherrard, New Brunswick, Canada
10/01/2018 21:34
Most of the comments are against the practice. My first impression is the same. But then again I've never lived in Siberia to know what skills their dogs need or the relationship between the peoples and their working animals. As mentioned hunting is important. Knowing which dogs are best suited may be the difference between a successful hunt and a wish sandwich.
A F Banks, J. City TN USA
10/01/2018 06:56
This is a barbaric practice you don’t need to bait defenseless animals for training you could use stuffed animals etc The police don’t allow attack dogs to bite and kill humans as part of training. Although I appreciate history and culture right now with deforestation we have pushed animals to the brink. You have wonderful wildlife as a tourist I would come there to see them in there natural habitat not being tortured by dogs. I hope there is change these magnificent animals deserve our respect and should not be treated as bait for dogs. We need to strive and evolve To be better than our predecessors - we know more now.
Erosha , Australia
09/01/2018 08:47

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