I mean, let’s be honest, when a grizzly bear’s placed in the public light, it’s usually not for being cuter than your favorite teddy bear. No, instead, most of the time when we hear about these great big bears is when they’ve attacked some unsuspecting woodland visitor.
But what if you helped that cub out instead? Gave it a good life, one it couldn’t have without you? That’s what one wildlife-hero did, and he’s had the most incredible experience because of it.
Naturalist Casey Anderson, being a Montana native, grew up completely surrounded by boundless opportunities to interact with wild life, practically in his own back yard.
Ever since he was a kid, he’s absolutely loved critters and creatures of all kinds and views them in a refreshing, non-judgmental light that can be somewhat difficult to find. And animals just seem to absolutely adore him as well, people giving him the nickname “animal magnet”. But no has animal ever formed a bond with Casey quit like Brutus the bear has.
Casey met Brutus, a very young grizzly bear at the time, several years ago in a wildlife conservation park where the cub was born. Unfortunately, the preservation suffered from over-population and the bear was either destined to remain in captivity for the rest of his life or be euthanized.
Rather than letting Brutus live out that awful fate, Casey swooped in and saved the day. He adopted the cub and raised him on his own, even bottle feeding the bear himself.
However, I think we all know how enormous grizzly bears get (almost up to 10’ tall!), and Casey’s now 800 pound friend couldn’t live in a house for long.
So, when the bear began to get just a little too large to keep as a house pet, Casey placed Brutus in a sanctuary built just for him, Montana Grizzly Encounter, so he could grow up “being a bear”.
Brutus’s home isn’t just a place for him to hang out though, the preserve also shows Brutus off to the public and aims to educate and teach them about grizzly bear biology, myths, and conservation.
The sanctuary also rescues other bears that are in poor captive situations and gives them a better life. Just by having the heart to rescue one grizzly bear, Casey has helped so many more – it’s simply inspiring!
Don’t worry though, just because Casey and Brutus aren’t roomies any more doesn’t mean they’re not still best buds. They’ve become the closest of friends over the years, practically forming a brother-like bond, and Brutus is still involved in plenty of Casey’s life.
They spend tons of time together and Brutus is a welcome part of Casey’s family, even joining them for their thanksgiving dinners! Casey also knew he couldn’t have any other best man at his wedding, and had Brutus fill the honorary position.
The pair has a seriously incredibly friendship that you can’t find anywhere else and, the best thing is, there’s a great message and cause to go along with it!
Casey is trying so hard to show the world that these bears aren’t as ruthless as they’re made out to be but are animals with real emotions and unique personalities, capable of bonding with another. They’re creatures with their own instincts, natural hunters not blood-thirsty killers.
Plus, come on, how cool would it be to have a grizzly bear as your best friend?
Question of the Day:
Would you become best friends with a bear?
Let us know in the comments below!