Linus arrived at the Center for Great Apes in 2006 along with the orangutan, Kiki, and chimpanzee, Mickey. All three apes were sold to a private owner when they were infants, but had grown too large to handle, so they were kept in separate cages in a garage for most of their lives. When Linus suddenly started to tear apart his tiny cage in order to escape, his owner asked the sanctuary to take all three great apes immediately.
Due to years of lack of exposure to sunlight in his garage cage, and limited space for movement and exercise, Linus could barely walk. He trembled constantly and becoming winded from the slightest exertion. His hair was matted with pounds of feces and it took caregivers many months of effort to groom him through the mesh and cut out the mats. Through it all, Linus was patient and gentle.
When Linus stepped outside into the sunshine for the first time at the sanctuary, he turned his huge face up to the sky and stared. As he gained more space outdoors, he learned to lumber around his enclosure, make his way into the chute system, and eventually climb to the top of his dome.