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Giraffe restraint, habituation, and desensitization at the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo

The giraffe restraint device manufactured at the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo has the capability to fully support the weight of an immobilized adult giraffe in an upright posture and allow physical restraint of giraffe. The unit has been used for either chemical or physical restraint 74 times in 22 months, on seven different adult giraffe, without animal or personnel injuries. Habituation and desensitization of the giraffe are critical prerequisites for the successful use of the giraffe restraint device. Yohimbine effectively reversed

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Fancy Footwork: Cheyenne Mountain Zoo’s Giraffe Herd Trains for Farrier Work and X-rays

Nearly eighty percent of all giraffe sedation procedures are related to foot care. Most of the knockdowns are done once the giraffes display clinical signs of lameness, hoof overgrowth, abscesses, or swelling. Statistics show that ten percent of giraffes put under anesthesia do not make it through the procedure. These alarming statistics demonstrate the necessity for institutions housing captive giraffes to develop ways to safely provide hoof care and maintenance with non-sedated giraffes. The Cheyenne Mountain Zoo (CMZ) recently started

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