Rozie the pregnant elephant does her Pilates
ROZIE is the pregnant Asian elephant at Albuquerque Zoo performing Pilates. She does this, we are told, to improve strength and flexibility. Rhonda Saiers, Elephant Manager, explains:
“We have exercise sessions twice a day with leg lifts, squats and other calisthenics. The exercises are especially important for Rozie. When she is strong and at ideal weight, we know chances are much better that she’ll have an uncomplicated and successful birth. Just as in humans, birth carries risks, but we’re doing all we can to minimize those.”
But you can’t help but think the experts are ignoring the obvious, the literal elephant in the room. Rozie is a captive. Granted, she’s not in the big top, stood on a ball and a waving a feather duster gripped by her trunk as a psychotic clown makes her dance. But the effect is to present Rozie as a happy captive pachyderm here to entertain the masses.
The Albuquerque government website assures us that the exercises keep Rozie “healthy and happy”.
Isn’t a happy elephant a free elephant?