Weatherford Democrat

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December 23, 2012

Hippity, hoppity holiday

Aussie native’s girlfriend gives him baby kangaroo as birthday present

(Continued)

As office and breeding manager for Slate River Ranch cutting horses, Cosgrove has a fairly flexible job and totes Bruce around during the day. He literally dives headfirst into a big floppy floral bag, custom-made by one of Cosgrove’s friends, and tucks himself in without anyone knowing he’s there.

Cosgrove feeds Bruce a bottle of kangaroo formula every four hours — he bites her nose when he’s hungry — and changes his diaper five or six times daily. The animals can be house-trained, she said.

Bruce also nibbles kangaroo kibble and attempts to consume the Christmas tree’s leaves, which are made of plastic.

“They love [real] leaves,” Cosgrove said. “Geordie shot kangaroos, growing up in Australia, because his dad was a farmer and they would eat the crops. There are so many there you have to cull them.”

Bruce mostly stays inside for now, Cosgrove said — moving slowly on the slippery hardwood floors — and may do so for some time.

She showed photos of the breeder’s house, home to two does, one more than 2 years old. The animals are sacked out on a bed.

“Bruce follows me around inside, and grabs my pants leg when he wants to be picked up, which is a lot,” she said, “but he sleeps a lot, too. They grow slowly.”

When Bruce is allowed out on the couple’s fenced acreage, he kicks it into overdrive, Cosgrove said, displaying a phone video of hopping far faster than any bunny’s.

Cosgrove said Bruce will stand 5 feet tall when he reaches maturity. She said she doesn’t worry about the powerful kicks that full-grown kangaroos are known to deliver.

“He’s neutered,” she said. “He’s been around people, and all the ones I saw — including his father — were really docile.”

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