Svetlana and Yuriy Panteleenko seem like a perfectly average family, but that’s until they introduce you to their 23-year-old adopted son, Stepan, a 300-lb brown bear. The unlikely family do almost everything together, right from playing in the backyard, to cuddling and watching TV on the sofa.
Stepan was just three months old when the Panteleenkos adopted him. He had been found by hunters after reportedly losing his mother and was in very bad shape. So they took him in and have been happily living together for the last 23 years. The couple say that because Stepan has been domesticated from a very young age, he has developed the gentlest temperament. He loves nothing more than hugging his parents every chance he gets and cuddling next to them on the sofa in the evening. “He absolutely loves people and is a really sociable bear – despite what people might think, he is not aggressive at all. We have never been bitten by Stepan,” Svetlana says.