We met with several people who work with breeders, importers, and
zoos—among a number of other places—until we found someone we were very
comfortable with and whose breeding practices we trusted. Once that
happened it was a matter of time before Zo was born.
If sloths are so important to you, why don’t you take Zo to South America and set her free?
Because Zo was born in captivity, she would face certain death if
released into the wild. If she didn’t get sick from eating the wrong
sorts of leaves, she would certainly wind up as an easy lunch for a
predator. She definitely prefers the cushy life. (We’ve asked!)
How difficult is it to adopt a sloth?
Very! Anytime you are looking into an exotic animal, there are many, many hoops to jump through, and a sloth is no exception. It
took well over a year of working with the state to receive the right
permits, biologists to approve our habitation, and the city for even
more permits (among other things). After that, we had to do our research
and make absolutely sure she was a captive born baby; we would never
pull an animal from the wild! Then there was the most difficult part of
all: The waiting game.
How much does a sloth cost?
Bringing home a baby sloth doesn’t come cheap! Over the course of
her 20+ year life, Zo’s care will cost us over $100,000—and that
doesn’t even include any possible medical emergencies. The cost of her
daily care routine is just under $14 a day in heat, electricity, food,
and water for the humidifier.
What do you do if Zo gets sick?
We can take care of sniffles and minor booboos on our own, but Zo
has to go to the doctor for anything more serious than that. We are
very lucky to have an exotic animal vet nearby who has done extensive
work with sloths, so we’re in good hands if something comes up that we
feel is outside our ability to handle.
Why do you have a donation button? Is Zo going hungry?
Absolutely not! We adopted Zo knowing full well that she was
going to cost us over $400 per month for many years. The donation button
was added at the insistence of our sloth-loving webmaster; any
donations will help us improve Zo’s habitat and offset operating costs
Why are you so secretive about your identity? Are you Batman Slothman?
Unfortunately, some overly enthusiastic sloth lovers are
uncomfortable with how “unnatural” it is to keep Zo in captivity. (We
don’t blame them; it’s easy to forget that for a captive-born baby like
Zo, an enclosure is their natural environment!) Because we don’t want to
put our precious Zo in any sort of danger, we’re a little shy about our
identity. We hope you can be our friend anyway!
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