Earlier this week, a 400-pound gorilla named Harambe was killed at a zoo in Cincinnati, Ohio after a toddler climbed under a railing and into its enclosure. In the days since, there's been a heated debate regarding whether or not the rare, western lowland silverback gorilla should have been shot. But while the taming of wild beasts has often been left to zoo keepers, it looks like a family in Russia may actually hold the key to domesticating dangerous animals.
According to the Daily Mail, a Russian coupled named Svetlana and Yuriy Panteleenko have adopted a wild bear and trained it to eat with them at the dinner table. The bear—a 23-year-old, 300-pound grizzly named Stepan—sits down with the Panteenkos each night and eats bowls of porridge, cans of condensed milk, and over 55 pounds of fish, vegetables, and eggs.
Now standing over seven feet tall, Stepan was adopted by Yuriy when he was just three-months-old. He was found by a group of hunters who noticed he had lost his mother and was badly injured. Today, after more than two decades of domestication, he enjoys watching television with the Panteleenkos on their sofa, watering the family's garden, and playing catch.
"He absolutely loves people and is a really sociable bear—despite what people might think, he is not aggressive at all," Svetlana told the Mirror. "He's got so many talents and loves a picnic. It's a wonder he doesn't eat us out of house and home."
[via The Daily Mail]