Here’s how dogs help cheetahs stay stress-free in zoos

If we are accustomed to opposing our friends, dogs and cats, it may happen that in the end they get along very well. This is the case with these rather incredible duos that can be seen at the San Diego Zoo. After all, a dog is not only a person’s best friend.

Dogs “therapists”.

Now dogs are well known for their devotion and friendliness, which brought them the title of “man’s best friend”. They are also used in the context of adjunctive therapy, mediation, for the treatment of human diseases. Then the so-called “therapeutic” dog serves as an intermediary between the patient and the therapist. It has also been found that dogs are very helpful in traumatic or stressful situations and keep us company when we may be depressed.

But sometimes animals need the support of other animals. We have already identified animals such as pigs, turkeys or ducks that supported their peers. Nowadays, dogs are increasingly being used as helpers to preserve endangered species that represent cheetahs. Conservation efforts that occur both in the wild and in captivity.

Cheetahs, very shy animals

These majestic-looking cats, which seem quite dangerous in the wild, are particularly shy and anxious, so difficult for them to communicate with each other and they are too tense to breed. As the species begins to become extinct, it seems important to address this issue, which does not promote cheetah breeding.

This trait is instinctively and deeply manifested in cheetahs in captivity. Therefore, this timidity and concern is not a good sign for breeding programs that serve to preserve the species. Since the 1980s, the zoo San Diego so he assigned each cheetah a “companion dog” to help the species reproduce more easily.

Cheetah’s “best friend” dog

“The dominant dog is very useful because cheetahs are quite instinctively shy and you can’t breed them. When you pair them, the cheetah watches the dog and looks for clues to teach him to model his behavior. It’s about making them feel that calm, happy energy of the dog. “Explain Janet Rose-Hinostroseresponsible for raising animals in the park San DiegoOnline Thought.Co. The main goal is to make cats more comfortable in the environment in captivity, so that they feel safe with other cheetahs, and therefore easier to breed.

All dogs mobilized by the zoo are rescued from shelters. This allows her dogs, often abandoned, to have a new life with a new purpose. “My favorite Hooperbecause we found him in a shelter where dogs are killed and he weighed only 18 pounds but now he lives with Amara, one of our most hardy cheetahs. It’s not about strength or power. It is about developing a positive relationship when a cheetah can imitate a dog. “list Janet Rose-Hinostrose.

Extraordinary friendship

Pairs are formed at an early age, when cheetahs are 3 to 4 months old. At first, they meet on both sides of the fence, accompanied by a guardian who keeps the dog on a leash. If there is a cordial agreement between them and the fact that there is a current between them, they can really meet to “play”, but primarily on a leash as a precaution. Once they have established a relationship of trust and can play safely, they move to a shared living space where they spend time together (except for food when the dogs have the opportunity to play with each other).

“It’s a love story of one kind that helps another survive. “Claims Jack GrishamVice President of Animal Collections at the Zoo St. Louis and Cheetah Species Survival Plan Coordinator North America. Zoos are often criticized for keeping animals for human enjoyment. However, you can find programs that help save animals like this.

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