- A one-year-old bear was taken from a Canadian zoo to a Dairy Queen drive-thru for ice cream.
- The zoo owners did not alert officials the bear was leaving the property – and it wasn’t the first time.
- The zoo is now facing charges.
- The bear appeared to be having a good time, though.
A zoo in Alberta, Canada took a bear through a Dairy Queen drive-thru for ice cream – and the owner is now facing charges.
According to The Guardian, Discovery Wildlife Park posted a video of the trip, which saw the bear travel in the passenger seat of a pick-up truck, on Facebook earlier this year.
The one-year-old Kodiak bear, Berkley, certainly seemed to be enjoying himself as he was hand-fed an ice cream cone, followed by an ice cream cake, through the window of the truck.
The zoo faced criticism after the video went online and eventually took it down. Now, it is facing charges.
The zoo stated that the visit had taken place before the Dairy Queen was open and “posed no danger to the public,” adding that the bear had been secured by a chain.
However, according to The Guardian, Alberta Fish and Wildlife said in a statement: “Under the terms and conditions of the zoo’s permit, the charges are directly related to the alleged failure of the park to notify the provincial government prior to the bear leaving the zoo.”
In 2017, the zoo also failed to inform officials that Berkley, who had just arrived as an orphan from the US, was being taken home and bottle-fed every night – another charge it is now facing.
Doug Bos, owner of Discovery Wildlife Park, plans to plead guilty to the charges.
He told The Guardian: “We made a mistake. I’m embarrassed about it, every time we take an animal off the property, we’re supposed to notify Fish and Wildlife, send them an email, and we forgot to do that in both instances.”
He added that the drive-thru outing may not have been a problem if the zoo had requested permission beforehand – as it’s hardly the first time a bear has been taken off the property.
“We’ve done lots of TV commercials, Super Bowl commercials with bears and food… some of them the bear was in a grocery store and wandered up and down the aisles,” he added, stressing that the bears are well-trained.
“These bears aren’t just your average bear that we go snag out of the wild and do this,” he said.
Despite this, the zoo will now be required to keep animals in a cage, crate, or kennel during transport – and it will have to provide more details when requesting permission to take them off property.
Watch a video of the drive-thru outing here:
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