Animal rights group rallies for Lodi couple to keep pet bear

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LODI, Ohio- An animal rights group is rallying support for a Lodi couple and their pet bear.

Jeff and Debbie Gillium rescued Archie the black bear from a bad home. He’s now in his late 30s and the Gilliums consider him part of their family. But the Ohio Department of Agriculture said they don’t have the proper permits and have to surrender Archie.

imageAt 11:30 a.m. on Wednesday, Renegade’s Run protested for the Gilliums to be able to keep their bear. The group said Archie should be able to finish his life where it began.

Jeff Gillium told Fox 8 News he used to get his permits through the Ohio Department of Natural Resources and didn’t know ODA was handling them until the deadline passed. A spokesperson for ODA said all permit holders were notified about the changes.