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How to Keep Cool: Like a Grizzly

Posted by Kirsten Pisto, Communications

It's getting hot, Seattle. A typical Northwest summer has around three days that reach over 90 degrees, and we'll be hitting that sweaty benchmark this weekend! Mother nature is mixing it up this summer, with an early heat wave bound to put our internal thermometers to the test.

The ice cubes in your chai tea latte are melting. Your dad's under-Crocs socks have come off. It might even be too hot to (gasp) paddle board. 

So, how are you going to survive this summer heat? Never fear, grizzly bears Keema and Denali have your back. Take it from these two furry, rain-loving locals—keeping cool is easy:

While our grizzly brothers have access to the cool pool, their keepers also supply them with special icy treats such as frozen salmon and fruit popsicles to beat the heat. Animals across the zoo are given special enrichment to help keep them cool, including sprinklers for the red pandas, ice piles for the otters and frozen bloodsicles for the lions. Much of the foliage in exhibits is left untrimmed to provide extra shady areas during the heat of the day. 

Of course, the most important rule is hydration—a tip that extends beyond zoo animals to people and pets. Always make sure you are drinking plenty of H2O throughout the day, not just when you feel thirsty. We also recommend ice cream.

Stay chill!

A grizzly bear finds frozen berries in an ice ball. Photo by Ryan Hawk/WPZ.
Orangutan keeps cool with an ice pop. Photo by Dennis Dow/WPZ.
Snow leopard getting up close with a bloodsicle. Photo by Mat Hayward/WPZ.
Sea eagles don't mess around! A quick splash is the best way to cool down. Photo by Dennis Dow/WPZ.