(QUINLAN, Texas) -- A massive descendant from the Ice Age locks its horns under a fence and lifts.
With a toss of its head, the outdoor pen is heaved off the ground. A relentlessly barking dog dances around the monster, careful to sidestep its lethal weight. Noise and energy kick up with the dust when the enclosure soon threatens to collapse. A riptide swirls as a roar drowns the tumult in its own deafening thunder.
For hell hath no fury like a 2,100-pound buffalo wanting to play tag with the family mutt. It is routine play that sets the stage for something even wilder to happen indoors.
"Hello, Wildthing! Hi baby!" Sherron Bridges says as the shaggy head of the buffalo swings past the kitchen doorframe only minutes later.
Deadly horns are inches from her chest as Wildthing walks by, sniffing the air and gently inspecting treasured family heirlooms and furniture. Sherron, along with her husband, RC, invites their pet buffalo named Wildthing inside the house whenever he wants human companionship. Incredibly, it was her idea.
"Why not? You let your kids into the house, don't you?" asks Sherron.
"[Wildthing] loves coming in. I have to make him leave and then he comes back in if the door is open," says RC. "The house used to look bigger before he grew."
It's a safe bet that no one had this in mind when they first sang about a home where the buffalo roam. But likely no one ever thought they'd see a buffalo serving as the best man in a cowboy's wedding either.
"Well, he just sat up there lookin' all nice and pretty. And he held the rings and when he got tired of holdin' 'em, he slung 'em off," Sherron recalls.
"He's actually been real good for our marriage. It's really kept it interesting," RC adds.
Wildthing, technically a bison, has lived with Sherron and RC Bridges in Quinlan, Texas, for the last five years. He's a beloved and frankly startling member of their family.
"I don't think about him bein' dangerous. To me he's just a little baby," says RC.
They began raising Wildthing when he was a calf on the verge of death. His mother couldn't nurse him properly, so RC jumped in with a bottle and soon fell in love with the little bison's fiery spirit. Now six feet tall, and a very healthy 2,100 pounds later, Wildthing and RC have an unshakeable bond.
"He is my best friend. He just melts with love," says RC.
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