Man pleads for return of pet bear cub - KCTV5

Man pleads for return of pet bear cub

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(WMC-TV) - An Arkansas man is devastated after state wildlife officials took away a bear cub he has been raising for the last six months, according to KAIT in Jonesboro, Ark.

Robert Baysinger of Searcy County misses his beloved bear named Savannah.

"She's part of my family," he said. "She'll jump up in my arms. She'll lay down in my lap and take her a nap."

He lets her climb trees, and they pick blackberries together. After six months with the bear cub, he has become a bit attached.

Now, he can barely keep himself together since she is gone. Monday afternoon he came home to a ticket taped to his door.

"I don't know where she's at, at this time, but I know she's not where she can climb trees and pick blackberries," he said.

Arkansas game and fish along with Searcy County law enforcement took Savannah.

"She's crying. They came in there with total strangers ... And took her by force and put her in a strange place that she's not used to. She's crying. She cries just like a kid. There's no difference from her and a small child other than she got claws and teeth," he said.

Steve Wilson at the Arkansas Game and Fish said having a bear is illegal.

"This is not only about his safety, but the bear's safety as well," said Wilson. "We all love bears. We all love wildlife. They're cute and they're cuddly, but it's called wildlife for a reason."

Baysinger says he planned to let Savannah go when nature called not the law.

"Her mother abandoned her on account of fire," he said. "I'm not gonna abandon her. I want to bring her back home."

Arkansas State workers say the bear went to a nearby rehab care home, but they would not tell Baysinger where.

The state is working with Baysinger to see if he can get some sort of visitation rights.

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