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Wildlife Center Will Name a Salmon for Your Ex, Then Feed It to a Bear

You said you needed closure. These bears are happy to help.
bear eating salmon
Photo: Daniel Wise / Barcroft Images / Barcroft Media via Getty Images

Anyone who tells you that there’s a ‘right’ way to get over a breakup isn’t currently trying to get over a breakup. They don’t know that self-care can take time that you don’t have, and you have no idea what to do with vague directives like “Just be gentle with yourself.” They don’t know that being petty is only a temporary mood boost, because by the time you’ve filled your ex’s didgeridoo with cat litter, you’ve already started questioning why you ever dated a man who owns a didgeridoo. And the suggestion to “just forget about her and move on” stopped being an option when Instagram was invented.


But a wildlife rehabilitation center, of all places, has offered to help the recently heartbroken find closure, and your wrecked heart can help with their mission at the same time. Oregon-based Wildlife Images Rehabilitation & Education Center has launched a Valentine’s Day fundraiser called “Catch and Release” that allows you to name a salmon after your ex. Then, staffers will feed that fish to the center’s two brown bears.

“Did you fall hook, line, and sinker for someone who broke your heart? [Brown bears] Kodi & Yak would love to help you get your revenge,” Wildlife Images cheerfully suggests. “In exchange for a $20.00 donation your ex’s name will be on a salmon and served up for dinner. We’ll provide you with a special certificate, and photos of Kodi and Yak destroying your ex!”

The organization also has a less aggressive option that allows you to “[provide] a salmon in your sweetheart’s honor,” which still costs $20, and still comes with a photo of the bears eating the salmon you bought, but this one won’t have the name KEVIN written on it. (Or you could always donate to the center’s other initiatives, treat yourself to a salmon dinner, and not bring your ex into it at all.)

Unsurprisingly, there was a lot of interest in bear therapy, or whatever, so if you didn’t already reserve a fish, then those unresolved emotions will have to wait until next Valentine’s Day. “Do [sic] to the overwhelming support Wildlife Images can no longer honor the certificate and photo opportunity for the Catch and Release option,” it posted in an update. “Thank you for helping cover the cost of feeding Kodi & Yak for the year!”

BUT! You still have time to feed your ex to a meerkat at the El Paso Zoo, which seems to be the place where this “Allow An Animal to Eat Your Feelings” thing started. Earlier this month, the zoo offered to name a cockroach after whoever wronged you, and then they’ll feed the insects to their meerkats. (And, after the response this idea got, the zoo’s tamarin and marmosets will have their own roach feast too).

Unlike the delayed gratification of getting a photo from Wildlife Images, the zoo is feeding all of those cursed bugs to their meerkats on Valentine’s Day at 2:15 PM (4:15 EST), and it will all be broadcast live on the zoo’s Meerkat Cam.

If feeding animals isn’t your thing, Hooters is still offering free wings to anyone who brings a photo of their ex to shred at the restaurant on Thursday. Whatever you choose, or however you cope, just swear it won’t involve pouring cat litter into anything. That’s going too far.