Fans around the world have been mourning Bob Barker, the legendary Price is Right host who died on August 26 at the age of 99.
Barker is remembered not only as a legendary TV personality but as a true animal lover who spent decades advocating for animals — he even made his iconic game show sign-off a reminder to spay and neuter your pets.
Now, after Barker’s passing, it has been revealed that he left a huge amount of money to animal charities in his will.
According to Radar Online, Barker has left most of his $70 million estate to various animal charities. “The bulk of Bob’s estate will be donated to humane organizations and military charities,” Barker’s longtime publicist Roger Neal said.
“Bob’s love of animals was well-known throughout his lifetime, so this shouldn’t come as a surprise,” a longtime friend of the game show host told the outlet.
According to TMZ, animal rights groups receiving money from Bob’s estate include DonkeyLand Rescue, the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society and United Activists for Animal Rights, of which his girlfriend Nancy Burnet is the president.
It’s not surprising that Barker left most of his fortune to animal charities — he was just as generous in life, supporting and generously donating to numerous animal welfare causes over the decades.
Barker said it was his wife Dorothy Jo who first got him involved in animal welfare, saying she was “before her times” and a vegetarian before it was common.
“We started talking more about it and I became more concerned about animals,” he in an interview with the Television Academy Foundation. “I have always loved animals and I had contributed financially to animal-oriented organizations, but I had never participated.”
He became more involved with animal organizations and “became more aware of the terrible exploitation of animals,” inciting a lifelong advocacy for animals. Barker also became a vegetarian. When Dorothy Jo passed away in 1981 at the age of 57 after a battle with cancer, Barker started the The DJ&T Foundation in her honor and continued advocating for animals.
Barker started signing off every The Price is Right episode with his now-iconic catchphrase, “This is Bob Barker reminding you to help control the pet population — have your pets spayed or neutered.” Drew Carey, who succeeded Barker as host, continues to end shows with that same PSA.
Barker’s love for animals was so important to him he even turned down lucrative show biz jobs if they went against his convictions: after serving as host of the Miss Universe and Miss USA pageants from 1967 to 1987, he quit after objecting to the pageant’s use of fur coats.
“I cannot do them as long as they give away fur coats. This involves morality,” he told AP at the time, turning down the six-figure gig.
Barker also made a $5 million donation to the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society, and was honored as the namesake of the MY Bob Barker, a ship used in campaigns against whaling and illegal fishing. The ship was featured in the reality TV series Whale Wars.
He was also involved with PETA, participating in public service announcements, advocating for a boycott on animal-tested products and speaking out against SeaWorld. Barker made a multi-million dollar donation to help the organization build a new office in Los Angeles.
Barker also donated millions of dollars to a number of law schools to support the study of animal rights.
According to Celebrity Pets, Barker owned about ten dogs at the time of his passing, and he says he’s always “had a pack of dogs” since childhood.
Bob Barker was a true animal hero, and it’s heartwarming that he left so much of his fortune to animal charities ❤️
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