February 8, 2018
Year of the Dog
- as seen by -Veronica Thomas
This Lunar New Year, we are celebrating the Year of the Dog at the Prospect Park Zoo.
The zoo is home to five dingoes, a unique member of the canine family. Dingoes are a species of wild dog found across Australia and likely first arrived with seafaring people from Southeast Asia about 4,000 to 5,000 years ago.
Wild dingoes currently face several challenges. They are often viewed as a pest species by farmers and are commonly blamed for attacks on livestock. Dingoes can also breed with domestic dogs making genetically pure dingoes increasingly rare.
Dingoes are very intelligent and are excellent problem solvers. At the zoo, we try to foster this by providing them with training and enrichment that lets them solve problems. Our dingoes especially love it when food is hidden inside boxes, bags, or paper that they need to take apart in order to get the treats.