Australian Vicki Lowing gains worldwide fame after divorcing her other half over pet reptile
An Australian woman, Vicki Lowing, says she divorced her husband after he asked her to give up her pet crocodile, Johnie, which she says is ‘like a child’ to her.
Mrs Lowing, 52, who has hand-raised the one-and-a-half metre reptile for 13 years, gives it the run of the house and even lets it sleep with her son Andrew in his bed. The trained nurse from Melbourne, Victoria, who had looked after ill and abandoned animals for decades, adopted the crocodile after it was left on her doorstep in 1996 by an anonymous person.
Her husband Greg said she spent too much time with the pet and asked her to give it up in a bid to save their marriage, but she refused and the couple divorced in 2005.
Mrs Lowing said: ‘As soon as I started looking after Johnie, Greg and I started having problems. We did nothing but fight. There was a lot of tension in the house.
‘He said I devoted all my time on the crocodile instead of him. I felt like Greg was asking me to put him ahead of one of my children.’
Mrs Lowing raised Johnie in her home with Andrew, who is only 18 months older than the crocodile. She said: ‘They were like brothers, following each other around. And as Andrew learnt and grew his curious side, so did Johnie. I would find Johnie emptying the cupboards, just as Andrew had done a few weeks earlier.
Johnie now sits on Mrs Lowing’s lap while she watches television and behaves ‘just like any cat or dog’.