Lisa Marie Presley speaks at Graceland on Elvis's birthday

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Elvis Presley grew up loving animals. As a young boy brought up in Tennessee, he was around all kinds of farmyard animals throughout his younger years. When he became a world-renowned rock icon, he bought a large mansion – Graceland, in Memphis, Tennessee – before filling the 10,000 square-foot property with his favourite kinds of pets. However, this sometimes meant he had to get his hands dirty.

By the end of 1960 Elvis had amassed a large collection of animals from around the world. Included in this collection was a monkey, a family of spider monkeys, peacocks, poodles and a large Great Pyrenees dog named Muffin.

The King also had a particular fixation on dogs. He had his own canine companion – a Chow Chow dog named Get Low who followed him everywhere. The pooch even outlived the star by a year. He also bought dogs for all his girlfriends, his mother, and his aunt to show his affection to them.

Shortly after the singer moved into his home in 1957, however, he became determined to fill his house and grounds up. He bought a load of pigs and chickens to keep him company.

But the King then decided he wanted some geese for his land.

Elvis knew exactly where to get geese, so he jumped in his Cadillac and drove out to the country.

After buying a bunch of birds, the King filled his back seats with geese and drove back to Graceland to expand his farmyard animal collection. He reportedly wanted them to “keep the lawn trim”.

The star didn’t stop there, though. The geese were soon left in good company as they were joined by a posse of goats and a flock of turkeys. One of the gobblers was even named Bow Tie.

These barnyard animals were later joined by a family of donkeys who were kept in the drained Graceland swimming pool until work was finished on the lot. Eventually – after the proper fencing had been erected around Graceland – the donkeys were allowed to roam the fields.

Over the years Elvis grew tired of looking after his animals and having to hire other people to do it for him. As a result, he eventually began auctioning off his collection of pets one-by-one.

He refused to get rid of his hen house, however. The singer wanted to retain a fresh daily supply of eggs for breakfast.

There was one particular animal that he did not have any love for, however: Cats.

Although he bought his daughter, Lisa Marie Presley, a cat named Puff, he was always at war with the felines. Stray cats materialised on the Graceland grounds over the years, forcing him to have to find homes for the kitties.

Elvis reportedly kept one cat around, however. He named it Wendell Corey – after one of his co-stars from the 1957 film Loving You.

The Blue Suede Shoes star also had a particular fascination with peacocks. Not only did he have a fleet of them on his grounds at all times, he also had some stained glass peacock panels custom designed for him in 1974 by his girlfriend Linda Thompson. These stained glass windows still stand to this day, but the star was forced to ban the live peacocks from his house.

During a virtual tour of Graceland, Elvis expert Angie Marchese revealed: “There were actually some pet peacocks that ran around the property here at Graceland at one point. That was until they started seeing their reflection in the gold Cadillac and started pecking the paint off the car.”

After this event, Elvis sent all of the peacocks away to live at Memphis Zoo.

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