In Slavic mythology: The image of Veles as a bear might have come from the belief that the Bear is the king of the forest. He protects and takes care of all other animals, plants and the forest itself.
In Norse mythology: The word berserker is derived from the Old Norse words ber-serkr meaning a "bear-shirt" i.e. a wild warrior. These warriors went into battle bare-chested (without armor).