By Ajay Kumar
Patna, Jan.11 : Severe winter in Bihar has affected the health of the animals at the Sanjay Gandhi Botanical and Zoological Garden in Patna, better known as the Patna Zoo. They are now being given a nutritious diet with additional supplements for a good health.
Veterinarians at the zoo believe that the animals need special care during winters.
Unienzyml, Cystone, Liv-52 and calcium carbonate are among the medicines that are being given to the lions and tigers in the Patna Zoo by mixing it in their daily feed. The animals have responded well in health to the special diet prescribed by the veterinarians.
"There are two ways through which we take care of our animals as much as possible. One is to take preventives, so that the animals don't get suffered from any disease. We do vaccination from time to time," said Dr. Ajay, Veterinarian, Patna Zoo
"We add vitamins, minerals and all other things in their food. And we maintain diets of every animal according to their requirement and try that whatever they could get from nature, we can also provide them all that," Dr.Ajay added.
Officials at the zoo say that the step is intended to provide a rich diet to the inmates that is usually found missing due to animals being in enclosure and thus failing to have the kind of diet they are accessible to in the forests.
"We take proper care of the vitamins, minerals and tonics of the animals according to their requirement. The meat that we give to carnivorous animals, we add nutrients to their meals through supplements from outside as the food lack in proteins," said Rakesh Kumar, Director of the Patna Zoo.
"It is because, in the wildlife, the animals catch their pray in forests themselves and they get a lot from it. But the artificial food that we provide them is not much healthy. It lacks nutrients so we supplement it," he added.
"We mix calcium, protein and liver tonic in their food. Our doctors do regular check-ups," Kumar said.
Visitors too are happy to observe proper upkeep and arrangements for the animals at the zoo.
"The condition of the animals is good, they look healthy. It seems that the authorities are taking proper care of them and providing good food. Everything is well-maintained," said N. C. Jha, a visitor.
Home to 1,159 animals belonging to 97 different species, the food bill of the zoo goes up by around five per cent during winter season.