Terri Lindley has trained horses for more than 30 years. A few years ago, she decided to take on the challenge of training exotic animals, adding zebras and camels to the mix.
"These camels are so much easier," she said. "They're stronger in a lot of ways than the horses. They're smart and they retain information better."
Now, enter Clyde. Yes, Clyde the camel.
"He's just the light in my life," Terri said. "I just love him. He's so sweet."
And he's her favorite. In fact, there isn't any place Terri wouldn't take him.
"I'd ride him anywhere," she said. "He was in my house, in church."
The two even take walks up and down their country road, a sight that has, on more than one occasion, stopped traffic.
"They stop and take our picture," she said. "We get our picture taken a lot."
It's not surprising the two have developed quite a bond over the past two years during his training. Their bond was strengthened this past spring when Terri found Clyde terribly ill and urinating blood.
"I was convinced he was gonna die or we were going to have to euthanize him," she said. "It was horrible."
Clyde was rushed to OSU's Animal Hospital in Stillwater where doctors discovered he had a huge kidney stone. Terri said he was given a 30 percent chance of living.
"The stone was down in his urethra, the urine tube that goes from the bladder to the outside and it totally obstructed or blocked the flow of urine out of his body," said Dr. Robert Streeter, OSU Large Animal Faculty Member.
Dr. Streeter said they had to do an emergency surgery to remove it. It seemed to be healing, but then one complication after another kept sending Clyde back to Stillwater, forcing doctors to find another option.
"He had to have what's called an urethrostomy, where he had a permanent opening of the urethra higher up, under his tail," Streeter said. "He urinates out the back instead of out the bottom."
"Pees out the back like a girl," Terri laughs.
It was an unexpected outcome for this bull and his journey. One many fans have followed on Facebook.
"People all over the world have gotten to know him and seen his journey that we've been struggling through," Terri said. "Everybody loves Clyde."
But nobody more than Terri, who has helped Clyde the camel over his own personal hump, knowing, if given the chance, the act would be reciprocated.
"He'd do anything in the world for me, even if he's never done it before, he'll give it a good, honest try," she said. "He's a good boy. I just love him so much."
Clyde isn't out of the woods yet. However, his medical bills have racked up over the last six months to more than $8,000. To help offset those expenses for Clyde's family, Terri is holding a fundraiser.
The Benefit Fun Day Planned for Clyde the Camel will be held October 5 and 6 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. each day at her farm located at 11223 S. Pine in Guthrie.
Events planned include camel rides, zebra and horse training demonstrations, a silent auction, a horse auction, commemorative T-shirt sales and pictures with camels and/or the zebra. For more information, call Terri Lindley Training at 405.921.7008.