A tiny elephant born premature earlier this month has been given time to cool off from the hot summer sun after her keepers at the Pittsburgh Zoo gave the calf a pool and a bath.
In a video posted to the zoo’s Facebook page, the curious calf is seen stomping around the inflatable pool and feeling the cool water on its feet.
It also appears to rejoice as a zookeeper sprays it with a hose, allowing the calf to get clean and cool at the same time.
The zookeepers are getting the calf acclimated to pools so that she can one day go into a bigger body of water and swim around on her own.
The unnamed newborn came into the world nearly a month premature, and its mother, Seeni, 21, was unable to produce milk. Officials were additionally worried that she wouldn’t know how to be a mother for the baby since she was orphaned herself and had rejected her first calf.
So, keepers at the Pittsburgh Zoo stepped in to hand-rear the calf themselves.
“Our first concern was to ensure that the calf was okay,” zoo president Dr. Barbara Baker said in a statement. “Being born one month early, she weighed only 184 pounds, which is 52 pounds below the median birth weight of a calf born full-term."
The calf, which is not yet on display for public viewing, will be introduced to the other elephants at the zoo and hopefully integrated into the herd later on.
“This is not a decision that you ever want to have to make, but the health and welfare of the calf was our top priority," said Willie Thieson, the zoo's elephant manager.
"Once she is bigger and stronger, we will begin introducing her to the herd. I know they are very curious about her, so that is a good sign.”