Phil Volk's grandkids were visiting, and he thought he heard them rustling around in the kitchen at 6:15 a.m.

"Why are you guys up so early?" Volk called.

And then in the half light he saw a shadow - the shadow not of a grandchild but of what turned out to be a bear cub that was eating its way around his Sonoita house Thursday.

"It had been on a feeding frenzy," said Volk. "It pulled the lid off a chocolate cake on the counter and finished that off. It tipped the trash and went through the contents of that. It got into the pantry for chips, bread, jelly beans.

"It was total disarray. He ate very well."

The one thing the 30-pound cub didn't do - after breaking in through a kitchen window - was attack anyone.

"It hissed and ran around the house" before taking refuge in a bedroom, Volk said. "But it didn't attack."

Still, this was a bear. A hungry bear. In a house. A house where young grandchildren were visiting.

"My wife said: 'We need to call 911,'" Volk said.

The 911 operator put them in touch with officers of the Arizona Game and Fish Department.

A department wildlife manager went to the house, tranquilized the bear and removed it, said Karen Klima, department spokeswoman.

Klima said the cub, which probably is less than a year old, was too young to be returned to the wild on its own.

"The mother was not around, and there have been no sightings of her - so it is possible that the cub was abandoned," she said.

The bear was taken to the Heritage Park Zoo in Prescott, where it will live, Klima said.

Presumably, the furry little critter's diet there will consist of something a bit more nutritious than chocolate cake and jelly beans.

Contact reporter Doug Kreutz at or at 573-4192. On Twitter: @DouglasKreutz