Wild Animals/taming bear cubs


hi. my neighbor keeps big barrels of honey by his house. he has a bear that comes and eats out of it sometimes. i was wondering if it would be easier to tame a full grown bear than a bear cub, or if it's even posible at all.
thanks so much for answering my question!
p.s. if i can tame either, how can i tame them?

Dear Isabella

Thank you for your question. I also wish to thank the authors of the websites I used.

Please note that the bear is a wild animal and is potentially dangerous. It has associated your neighbour's house with food (honey) and could become dangerous if people do not give it food. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-11020965 says that it is illegal to feed bears in Canada, as the bears are likely to associate food with humans and are more likely to come  into towns and cities to look for food.

Dr Lynn Rogers (http://www.bearsmart.com/becoming-bear-smart/can-we-coexist) says that people can co-exist with bears if the people learn the bears' body language. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tame_bear says that bears can be tamed when young.

I have looked at various websites and have found mixed results. One problem with bears is that they do not have expressive faces and it can be difficult to determine their mood. If, as Dr Lynn Rogers suggests, you can determine their mood via their body language, you can probably live peacefully with the bear that takes honey from your neighbour's house. It is probably easier to tame a bear cub rather than an adult bear, but you should always be cautious near bears, especially when they associate people with food, which has become the situation with your neighbour.

All the best


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Jonathan Wright


I can answer questions about wild mammals and other animals, as well as extinct animals and zoos. I am not an expert about every animal species. I can look up information from books and the internet, but can't verify if all the information is true. Please don't ask questions about: 1. Pets. I am not a vet. Please contact a vet if your pet is ill. You may need to spend some money if you want your pet to live. Don't get a pet if you don't know how to look after it and if you can't provide it with the space, food and possible companions that will help it live a healthy life. Don't take animals from the wild, unless they are ill and/or injured and you can protect them until a wildlife charity can help. It is cruel to take animals from their parents, especially if the parents will look for the babies, while putting their other babies at risk. You may be breaking the law by keeping wild animals or you may need a licence to look after some species. Please check with a local wildlife group. 2. Eggs: Please don't remove eggs from nests. The mother birds provide the right temperature for the eggs and won't sit on them if the temperature is warm enough for them to develop naturally. It is illegal to remove eggs of some species and, unless you have an incubator or a broody hen, the egg may not develop. If you are allowed to touch the eggs, you can candle them to see if they are fertile. If theys aren't fertile, they won't hatch. 3. Fights: Please don't ask about fights between different animals. These questions assume that individuals of two species fight each time they meet and that one species will always be victorious over another. This is untrue. There are cases where a live mouse has been fed to a venomous snake, bitten the snake leading to the snake's demise. 4: Diseases: Please ask doctors or other medical experts about diseases that you may catch from animals. I can't advise on how to deal with viruses, bacteria etc.


I have a zoology degree and have been interested in animals since I was two. I am a zoo volunteer at London Zoo. I have appeared on a BBC Radio Quiz, 'Wildbrain'.

WWF. ZSL. Natural History Museum. RSPB. London Bat Group.

Newsletters of London Zoo volunteers and the London Bat Group

BSC degree in Zoology. 'A' level in Zoology. 'O' Level in Biology.

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