Big Fat Bear Who’s Twice The Size He Should Be Hates His New Diet

by : Lucy Connolly on : 26 Feb 2020 11:55
Big Fat Bear Who's Twice The Size He Should Be Hates His New DietThe Wild Animal Sanctuary/Facebook

You know that feeling when you’ve just started a new diet and can’t stop thinking about all the delicious food you could be eating if you didn’t need to lose weight?

And then, because of that, every single piece of healthy food that enters your mouth – be it a freshly prepared salad or a lovely ripe banana – tastes absolutely horrendous because you can think of at least 100 more mouth-watering things you could be eating?


Of course you do, and so does Dillan the big fat bear, who was rescued by The Wild Animal Sanctuary in Colorado last month and swiftly put on a diet because he was twice the size he should be.

You can watch Dillan settling into his new home below:

Dillan's Update

Video of The Day! Dillan is enjoying his new location within a habitat at the Sanctuary. He’s in a temporary enclosure within the same habitat as Lily, but she is still fast asleep and hibernating, so they have not met. This is Dillan’s favorite hammock, but he has to do the “big body roll” to generate enough inertia to get himself out. Staff visits him numerous times a day so he can still feel totally spoiled… but sooner or later, he will eventually meet Lily, and then maybe enjoy her company more! #WildAnimalSanctuary

Posted by The Wild Animal Sanctuary on Saturday, February 22, 2020

Up until the large bear was rescued at the end of January, Dillan had spent his life inside a small concrete pen at a Pennsylvania roadside zoo. Without any space to exercise or even move around much, the bear quickly gained weight.


This extra weight has taken a toll on Dillan’s health, putting stress on his ankles and feet, and making it difficult for him to walk. ‘He’s literally 100 pounds overweight. His belly hangs to the ground,’ Kent Drotar, public relations director at the sanctuary, told The Dodo.

His rescuers are determined to help him drop the extra weight, feeding him fresh fruit and vegetables and attempting to get him to exercise – although Dillan isn’t too keen about either of these new options.

dillan the big fat bearThe Wild Animal Sanctuary/Facebook

Instead of exercising, the bear is instead getting used to relaxing in his new space and is making the most of being able to nap freely for the first time, as his old home was located next to a shooting range.


Kent said:

[He] just seems to enjoy the peace and quiet and in a very relaxed way slumbers off and on throughout the day. He has fallen in love with the fire hose hammocks that we use for our animals.

His new home is proving beneficial in more ways than one, with the bear no longer showing signs of stress and his personality emerging more and more. ‘Dillan is turning out to be a bit of a ham,’ Kent said.

big fat bearThe Wild Animal Sanctuary/Facebook

Although Dillan couldn’t be happier at the moment, with Kent saying the bear is ‘enjoying and learning how to live a life of luxury’, he’s about to make another step up in the world.

Soon, he’ll get a bigger home where he’ll be able to move around a multiple-acre habitat with another rescued moon bear, Lily. His rescuers are hopeful that getting outdoors will help kick-start his weight loss, and improve his quality of life even more.

Hopefully Dillan and Lily will become fast friends, and Dillan will be able to start losing the weight he needs to.

If you have a story you want to tell, send it to UNILAD via [email protected]

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Lucy Connolly

A Broadcast Journalism Masters graduate who went on to achieve an NCTJ level 3 Diploma in Journalism, Lucy has done stints at ITV, BBC Inside Out and Key 103. While working as a journalist for UNILAD, Lucy has reported on breaking news stories while also writing features about mental health, cervical screening awareness, and Little Mix (who she is unapologetically obsessed with).

Topics: Animals, Animal Rescue, Bear, Colorado, Diet


The Wild Animal Sanctuary/Facebook and 1 other
  1. The Wild Animal Sanctuary/Facebook


  2. The Dodo

    Overweight Bear Is Less Than Thrilled With His New Diet