Unlikely Animal Friends Henry and Baloo Explore the Great Outdoors
Most dogs are happy with the bare necessities. Loving companionship from their humans, physical and mental playtime, a warm bed, and healthy meals (OK, and treats!) are all they need to get by most of the time. Oh, and maybe a cat on their head. At least, this works for Henry, the Colorado dog, as he's known on Instagram.
Few siblings would allow such an intrusion of personal space, for but Henry, Baloo is the peanut butter to his chocolate, the Jim to his Pam, the yin to his yang.
Pet parents Cynthia Bennett and Andre Sibilsky of Denver adopted Henry in 2014 when he was almost 4 months old, hoping to have a canine climbing buddy who could join them mountain hiking and on other outdoor adventures. A playful mix of German shepherd, Australian shepherd, American Staffordshire terrier, boxer, and possibly Siberian husky, Henry "immediately scaled the steepest rock to get a better view. Andre and I looked at each other and smiled. This was the mountain dog we had been dreaming of," Cynthia shares on the couples' website, Our Wild Tales.
In 2017, Bennett and Sibilksy adopted Baloo, a frisky Lynx Point Siamese mix, so that Henry could have a comforting travel companion. Within a few days, Henry and Baloo were inseparable! From the Colorado mountains to the Pacific Northwest forests, Baloo often trekked alongside Henry, keeping the pace while hiking. Other times, the smaller feline got a little help from his big brother.
Why does Baloo rest on Henry's head? Apparently it's just a way for the two to be close. After their expeditions, they're always snuggling together in a sleeping bag, hammock, or the back of Sibilksy's Jeep. And while Baloo is leash-trained, Bennett shares that the cat is never tied to Henry and can jump off his brother's back whenever he feels like it. But let's be real: if you could have a doggie-back ride after a strenuous mountain hike, wouldn't you take it? It's worth pointing out that Bennett and Sibilksy also carry both pets on their backs when traversing especially rough terrain—that's right, sometimes Henry gets a piggy-back ride too!
We at Daily Paws coo over ooodles of adorable pets, but even we can't deny these two are insanely photogenic! Bennett, a professional photographer, captures their explorations into the wild to the delight of 2 million Instagram followers.
Bennett and Sibilsky share the love of these unlikely animal adventurers in other ways, too. Henry and Baloo are the subjects of an annual calendar, and part of the proceeds benefits shelters and rescues, and a new book was released in 2020. There's also the Henry & Baloo Foundation, a special land preservation effort to help save the American West.
Without a doubt, this cuddly twosome inspires us to get offline and into the great outdoors!