Take a behind-the-scenes look at Nashville Zoo, where preventative care is critical

Zebras 'Stripette' and 'Dottie' get a check-up
Posted: 5:31 PM, Nov 16, 2018
Updated: 2018-11-16 23:35:23Z

The Nashville Zoo houses thousands of animals and keeping them healthy is a big job! It takes a team of experienced vets to keep these exotic animals safe and sedated during preventative procedures. 

"We are monitoring her anesthesia. We're monitoring her respiration rate. You can see her belly coming up and down," said Heather Robertson, Director of Veterinary Services at the Nashville Zoo, "Today we're going to re-check "Stripette" and "Dottie" our females zebras for foot work."

About a month ago, Robertson and her team checked their feet.

"It's kind of like us getting a mani-pedi," she said. 

Now it's time for a follow-up. In the wild, these animals don't have a long life-expectancy, maybe about 9-years or so. But in captivity, without predators, they can live much longer -- to about 40 years.

"Almost every day we're doing stuff behind-the-scenes because we have almost 2000 animals in our collection. So every animal that's here in the zoo at some point gets preventative healthcare," she said.