The Grapevine

Overweight Elephant At Zoo Goes On A Diet With The Help Of Visitors

As per a new report, visitors of a zoo in Japan are playing their part in helping an overweight elephant by feeding her a healthy diet.

Elephant At Japanese Zoo Gets Help From Visitors In Her Weight Loss Journey

Apparently, us humans aren’t the only ones who gain weight, which means that us humans aren’t the only ones who need to go on a diet when we reach a certain number on the scale. This is because a female African elephant at a Japanese zoo has reportedly become overweight and is going on a diet-and-exercise regime in preparation for what is considered to be a groundbreaking attempt at artificial insemination. Because of this, visitors at the zoo are helping her shed her pounds by feeding her a healthier diet.

18 years old, Mao the elephant recently gained some 500 kilograms when she was put on a special feeding program to help her after her mate died back in November 2018. However, the nation is reportedly planning to artificially inbred an elephant for the first time. This is why zoo officials are making efforts to help her shed some weight, which would then increase her chances of success in the process.

Since June 1, visitors at the Morioka Zoo in Iwete Prefecture, northeastern Japan, are given the chance to become a part of her weight loss journey since they are offering her bananas and apples via a long pole over the fence and helping her walk back and forth between both ends of her enclosure. Per the zoo, she makes this 60-meter journey up to 15 times a day.

As of Saturday, Mao has already lost 10 kg and is now at 3,940 kg. However, she still has a long way to go because her target weight is 3,600 kg. But overdoing her diet can be harmful as well, which is why careful supervision is being given.

"We will closely monitor Mao's health condition and be creative with a menu and number of feeding times," according to one of the zoo officials in charge of looking after the elephant.

elephant-266791_1920 Like humans, elephants can get overweight too. Image courtesy of Pixabay, public domain

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