Elvis Presley Once Kept a Menagerie of Animals

“The King of Rock and Roll,” also known as Elvis Presley, was quite fond of animals. He had a number of different ones over the years, including horses and even monkeys. Read on to learn about some of the animals he kept around him at Graceland.

Elvis Presley purchased Graceland at just 22 years of age

Elvis Presley
Elvis Presley | Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

Presley was an extremely successful artist that’s still talked about to this day. His fame allowed him to purchase his sprawling Memphis, Tennessee home called Graceland in 1957. He paid $102,500 for the home that’s become synonymous with Presley. The new purchase came with 13.8 acres of land, which he’d use to keep numerous animals.

History.com reports that the singer and actor put a $1,000 deposit on the home on March 19, 1957. Both Elvis, his parents, Gladys and Vernon Presley, and his grandmother would call the estate home. Several of Presley’s friends, his wife at the time Priscilla Presley, and others lived at the home over the years as well.

Presley died in the bathroom upstairs of the home on August 16, 1977 and was buried on the property of the estate. It’s said he died from a heart attack, and toxicology reports showed numerous drugs in his system. He was known to abuse drugs, including opiates, according to PBS.

Fans mourn the icon to this day, but luckily they have a connection to him in the form of his beloved home. A few years after his death, Graceland was opened to the public in 1982, and fans can still tour the estate to this day. It’s full of Presley’s belongings and items from the past, so it’s perfect for any die-hard fan.

Elvis Presley once kept a menagerie of animals

Elvis Presley
Elvis Presley | RB/Redferns

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But before the death of the “Are You Lonesome Tonight?” singer, Presley was fond of animals. Some fans might be surprised by the wide variety of animals Presley had while alive. The animals that he famously owned ranged from monkeys to a cat he bought his daughter, along with many more.

According to the blog of the official website for the Graceland estate, Graceland.com, when Elvis moved his family to the property, they had a farm that included his mother’s chickens. Vernon had hogs on the estate as well.

The King seemed to have all types of different animals, even a chimpanzee and a squirrel monkey at one point. He even had an actual turkey with the unique name of Bowtie. But not to be outdone, the star was fond of dogs too, and even bought his daughter a cat one year as well.

But some of the animals from Presley’s life didn’t get to stay on the estate for long. When fans from Australia sent the icon a wallaby on two occasions, they found new homes at the Memphis Zoo. Even peacocks were once at Graceland, but they went to the zoo as well.

Elvis was gifted donkeys which he kept in his unfilled swimming pool when the fence around his new estate was not yet complete. That must have been a real sight to see. But there were even more animals at Graceland. They added additional chickens, along with ducks to the mix later, as well as a bird that repeated what it heard. There were also horses on property as well, and some are still kept there at the estate to this day.

It turns out Elvis Presley was quite the animal lover, and it’s proven by the numerous animals he had over the years.