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01 August 2017 | 17:19
New York couple raised 11 bears
Jim and Susan Kowalczik take care of Jimmy - a 100 stone Kodiak brown bear - at their animal orphanage.
The pair have had Jimmy for 21 years and took him in when he was just a baby cub.

“Jimmy is my best friend. It doesn’t get any better than that. He loves you just for you,” says 57-year-old Jim.

Jimmy is a gentle creature Jim adds, but he is unaware of his strength.

They currently have 11 bears, including black and Syrian bears, in their sanctuary - Orphaned Wildlife Centre in Otisville, New York State. The bears feast on roughly 30lbs of food a day, from pet food, to fruit, meat and the occasional marshmallow. The couple only opened the non-profit sanctuary to the public last year where they have rescued and adopted other animals too including squirrels, chipmunks, rabbits and deers. The bears were rescued as cubs from breeding programmes or nature reserves that closed down.

Jim and Susan say the bears are like their children and when one of them dies, it is like morning a death of a child.
Redactor: Lina Lungu

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