Archive for Friday, February 20, 2009

Chimp, owner had unusual bond

February 20, 2009


— Travis the chimpanzee’s relationship with his owner was closer than those of some married couples.

Sandra Herold gave him the finest food, and wine in long-stemmed glasses. They took baths together and cuddled in the bed they shared. Travis brushed the lonely widow’s hair each night and pined for her when she was away.

If she left the house alone, Travis would give her a kiss.

“If I left with someone Travis would get upset,” Herold said Wednesday.

Experts say the unusually human relationship would have been confusing for any animal. It may have also played a role in Travis’ savage attack Monday on Herold’s friend, 55-year-old Charla Nash of Stamford.

“This is a crazy relationship,” said Stephen Rene Tello, executive director of Primarily Primates, a sanctuary for chimps in Texas. “He was probably very bonded with her. I can kind of see it in his eyes this is his surrogate mother.”

And chimps like 14-year-old Travis, who was shot and killed by police, protect their mates and turf.

“If there is another person entering his space, he might consider it a threat to his territory, or even his mate,” Tello said.


Chris Ogle 9 years ago

Wonder if she ever considered Mr. Mop... baby come back.

Calliope877 9 years ago

Yeah, that's definately weird. Don't get me wrong, I'm a fan of monkeys...but bathing/sleeping with one? That's kinda pushin' it. No wonder the poor brute went ape $h!t...

Satirical 9 years ago

How dare any of you discriminate against their love! They have a right to be happy. I think we should allow civil unions for any two living creatures who share so much. Then society will be forced to recognize them regardless of whether they think it is acceptable. They just want equal rights, don't discriminate!

gr 9 years ago

"Yeah, that's definately weird. Don't get me wrong, I'm a fan of monkeys…but bathing/sleeping with one? That's kinda pushin' it."

You narrow-minded religious nuts need to open your mind a little. They shot her mate. Have some sympathy, man.

woodenfleaeater 9 years ago

If this monkey wasn't dead, I would say to spank it.

coolmom 9 years ago

i feel bad for everyone involved here. she was taking the treat it as a human son thing a little far but from the stories i have read after losing her hubby and a grown child it sounded like she used travis to help with the depression and give her companionship, kinda like the crazy cat lady but with a chimp that is capable of great harm. i am praying for the woman that came to help and was critically injured.

Confrontation 9 years ago

Funny, prospector ! Seriously, I think he was tired of the psycho 70-year-old. I doubt that love was blind for him. I imagine that seeing her in the tub was exactly what drove him insane.

geniusmannumber1 9 years ago

Okay, so far we hate gays, women, and the elderly. Can we get some overt racism on this thread? Who's with me?

woodenfleaeater 9 years ago

I bet the attacked is going to suffer from Pithikosophobia for the remainder of her life.

jonas_opines 9 years ago

Hey, it took a little longer than normal for a couple jack#@$s to make an implicit comparison that homosexual human beings are the same as or at least no better than lesser primates.

Way to go, again.

Ken Miller 9 years ago

This would never have happened if the lady and her monkey consulted with Dr. Zaius.

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