Carly is a female snow monkey who arrived at the sanctuary in early 2005. As a former "pet," Carly led a particularly sad and lonely existence until animal control officers confiscated her from her "owner" in Nevada. She had been forced to spend years living in social isolation, away from others of her kind. Kept in a small cage in a garage, there was no fresh air, no sunshine and no climbing structure. Her shelter was a barren metal cage with a grid floor covered with her waste, rotten food and dirty blankets. It appeared that Carly had been severely neglected and was not given an adequate diet, being fed primarily junk food. She arrived at the sanctuary slightly overweight, her muscles weak from lack of exercise. She showed signs of abnormal behavior such as repetitive rocking back and forth. Because there was no door to her cage, she had to be anesthetized while the cage was opened with bolt cutters.
Carly's rehabilitation at the sanctuary has taken longer than other rescued individuals. Some former "pets" are so dysfunctional as a result of their previous life experiences that it can be very difficult for them to accept or be accepted by others. Sadly, they lack social skills and have problems interacting with other monkeys. Initial attempts to introduce Carly to other snow monkeys were unsuccessful. Despite living next to these other individuals and having social contact with some of them, she did not "click" with anyone in particular. After almost a year, however, she successfully was introduced to two other snow monkeys who came from similar backgrounds, Chessie and Jerry. The three now live together in one of our large semi-natural enclosures. The enclosure has been refurbished with new shelters and high "skyways." There is also a tree, logs, grass and shrubs. All three monkeys have the opportunity to socialize and make direct contact with a number of other snow monkeys who live around them. We hope to introduce them to another group and eventually release all into a free-range environment. This new life at the Born Free USA Primate Sanctuary is a far cry from the years Carly was forced to live as a "pet," isolated within a small cage in a garage.