His bear is named Buffy, and if Ben's telling the truth, he's a riot to have around, though he needs to be well respected. The story of Buffy discovering the bathtub and the hygienic goodies thereof is excellent.
That is a happy pet bear story. The following, from The New York Times of Wednesday, Sept. 24 1884, is not:
PORTLAND, Oregon, Sept. 23.--At Rathdrum, Idaho, a pet bear broke loose on
Sunday and ran through the streets. The animal attacked a girl of 12, and badly
mangled her with his teeth and claws, and nearly crushed her to death by
hugging. Four men, hearing the girl's cries, rushed to the scene.
The bear turned furiously on them, dropping the child. Three of the men
were badly injured, one having a hand nearly torn off. The bear
escaped. It is reported that the girl cannot live. The people are
greatly incensed against the owner of the animal.