The photo speaks for itself, but we want to share a little about Bambi’s weight as well. We know many of you are concerned about her putting on weight, but we also think most people forgot how emaciated she was upon arrival. It’s also difficult to not see her as anything but thin when you see her next to the other girls. Bambi is still underweight, but we are delighted to share the evidence of her weight gain with all of you. For more accurate monitoring, we weighed her several weeks ago and are scheduled to obtain a second weight in another couple of weeks.
We are working on helping Bambi gain weight in a healthy manner. Elephants can be fed high-sugar and high-calorie foods, such as cooked foods and large amounts of sugar cane, to help them gain weight quickly. It effectively allows elephants to gain weight in short periods, but its unnatural and can be very hard on their bodies. With the unknown status of Bambi’s health and her possible kidney issues, we want to make sure she gains weight appropriately. This means she receives standard, nutritious, and healthy meals, just in slightly larger quantities and more often. Like the others, her many hours of grazing each day are supplemented with hay, grains, fresh fruit, and vegetables.
Gaining weight is made slightly more challenging by Bambi’s unbelievable energy levels. It’s hard to put weight on an animal who is always on the move. Maia is the only other elephant here who is that active, but we suspect that Bambi covers more ground than Maia, and Maia has never been thin. 😉
Bambi will be skinny for a while – and, with her long legs and height, she may always appear leaner than our other elephants. As these photos show, her weight is going in the right direction, so her insatiable appetite and zest for life are paying off.