Dhole pups

It’s been a while since I last made a post, so I thought I’d talk a bit about the Dhole pups at the MN Zoo. A lot of people have questions about the pups as well as the adults, so I would like to address them here.

The first thing I would like to talk about is the history of the adults. We have two females (sisters) and two males (brothers). They come from two different European zoos. It is the hope that the small pack size as well as the siblings having a bond will mean less dominance issues for the Dholes.

Now I would like to talk about the pups. There are three of them, and you can most reliably see them around 4:30-5:00 pm, although there starting to be more active in the morning. There are also some things to be aware of when visiting. The biggest thing is that one of the interactive has been turned off. It was designed for people to press buttons and hear the sounds Dholes make, but was stressing the adults. Especially when the pup sound was played. Another thing is to give the Dholes and the other guests space. As I indicated the Dholes can hear what is going on behind the glass. The pups are less likely to get close if people are pressed against the glass. It is also unfair to the rest of the guests who have to see around you. You can see just as well from the three benches in the exhibit.

Now that I’m done explaining some things about the Dholes, it’s time to share some pictures.

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2 pups play with a bit of deer hide.

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2 pups and an adult

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All three pups with one of the adults

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2 pups by the den.

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Notice the conflicting body language in this picture. The pup on the left has its ears forward indicating confidence, but the pup on the right has its ears down indicating unease or submission. However, the pup to the left has it’s tail lower than the pup to the right indicating the opposite message then the ears. It looks like the pups are having more fun playing then figuring out who is more dominant. Of course if a pup does better in play it can also help predict the future.

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