Forget the porridge, give me cotton candy!

Every Thursday the animal department staff (along with any volunteers or museum staff that can tolerate the keepers) go to lunch together somewhere off campus. Occasionally we splurge and go to Golden Corral. A few weeks ago some of the keepers noticed there was blue cotton candy in the dessert section. We decided to take all the cotton candy they had (of course, we waited until we were on our way out to snag it all) so that we could see if our bears would like it!

Now, we wouldn’t just give our bears cotton candy for no good reason. There is, in fact, a method to our cotton candy madness. You see, often times when we give our animals medicine we have to disguise it in something yummy that they like to eat (you can read more about this in Jill’s post here.)

Mimi, currently our oldest bear, is especially hard to please when it comes to taking medicine. It seems no matter how much we try to disguise her meds with the yummiest of treats, she always knows when we’re up to no good and she refuses to take them.  Sherry thought that maybe cotton candy could be added to the list of things that our bears would love and would be willing to take their meds with.

This is not a treat that they would receive very often, but considering it’s just a little bit of sugar and a lot of air, it seems like a decent treat to try. So we grabbed the cotton candy and ran some taste tests with all the bears to see if they would like it. Watch the video and decide for yourself!


4 responses to Forget the porridge, give me cotton candy!

    • Sherry Samuels says:

      It’s much harder to brush a bear’s teeth than the teeth of ferrets. The keepers will eventually work “teeth brushing” into the operant conditioning routine. We’ll definitely take video of that!

  1. Leiana says:

    there is so much about this post that i like, marilyn. everything from walking out of golden corral with all of the blue cotton candy…to watching the bears (oh i miss those bears) nosh on the goods…to the end credits. great post! thank you.

  2. Marilyn Johnson says:

    Thanks Leiana! This was a fun post to do and watching the bears eat the cotton candy for the first time was quite enjoyable.:)

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