ALONE AND LONELY
THE WEEK|August 01, 2021
The pandemic has taken its toll on pets and captive animals, too
RAHUL DEVULAPALLI

Mason, a 30-year-old male chimpanzee, is weighed down by loneliness. The resident of the Mysuru zoo loves human company and the presence of visitors kept him entertained all these years. The pandemic and the subsequent lockdowns and restrictions have taken away Mason’s human visitors and he is not liking it.

Today, the zoo officials are making sure that Mason is in good spirits. “The staff members and I pass through Mason’s enclosure regularly. We wave at him and talk to him. During this time, it is very important to engage animals mentally and physically,” said Ajith Kulkarni, director of the zoo.

Zoos across the country are seeing lesser human-animal interactions, raising concerns about the mental health of captive animals.

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