Most couples who are unable to have kids usually turn to adoption as a way around raising a family of their own. But one Russian couple have taken a completely different approach. 

The idea of sharing your home with a 300lb grizzly bear sounds less than accommodating. In fact, I’m sure the moment a window of opportunity crops up where you can abandon your gaff for a bear-free abode you would jump at it. The setting may sound unconventional – not to mention dangerous – but for Svetlana and Yuriy Panteleenko they couldn’t fathom life without their 25-year-old bear, Stepan.



Dwarfing both the husband and wife, the 7ft mammal is tall enough to be a centre in any NBA starting line-up. But despite his imposing figure, Stepan is just as domesticated and well behaved as your standard pet. He’s even well behaved enough to sit with Svetlana and Yuriy to watch TV in the evenings. He’s been known to occasionally help around the house by watering the plants in their garden, which is just as well that someone of his frame pulls his weight around the house. It also appears there’s a hint of truth to the story of Goldilocks and the Three Bearsas he goes through bowls of porridge each day. However, he can’t resist going through his favourite dish either, a can of condensed milk.