A Chinese family has given up their dog. Why? Because it was actually a bear.
The family live in the Yunnan province of China. They adopted a Tibetan mastiff puppy while on vacation.
What they really adopted, however, was an endangered Asiatic black bear cub. The bear has been taken into care by an animal sanctuary.
The owner, Su Mou, told the China News Service that they began to get suspicious when their “dog” did not stop growing. He was devouring an entire box of fruit and two buckets of noodles every day. He grew to be 3 feet tall and 250 pounds before they called anyone.
Black bears can stand on their back legs, and they do so much more often than dogs. Combined with the increasingly strange appearance of “Little Black,” they realized their mistake. “The more he grew, the more like a bear he looked,” said their neighbor.
Su admitted she was scared of her pet, but she was also afraid of what would happen if they just released the bear back into the wild. They reached out to local authorities for help.
The bear is now being looked after at the Yunnan Wildlife Rescue Center.
Asiatic black bears are a protected species, and considered “vulnerable” by the IUCN. In China, the bears are hunted for their body parts, which are used in traditional medicine.
This isn’t the first time someone has mistaken a bear for a puppy. In 2015, a farmer rescued an abandoned “dog” from the woods. After realizing his mistake, he still kept the bear. Eventually, local authorities found out and the bear was taken into the care of environmental officials.
Source: National Geographic