Monday, April 7, 2008

ABC News: Bi-Polar Bear? Keeper Calls Knut "Psycho"

What - so now everyone's a psychiatrist???

Keeper Calls Knut the Bear a 'Psycho'
Berlin Zoo's Star Attraction May Have Serious Issues
By CHRISTEL KUCHARZPASSAU, Germany, March 26, 2008

Celebrity polar bear Knut is making headlines again, this time not for being cute and cuddly but rather for an apparent human fixation.

"Knut needs to leave Berlin Zoo, the sooner the better. He's had so much contact with humans in his young life that he doesn't realize he's a polar bear, he needs to get used to a life without the people who brought him up," one of his keepers, Markus Roebke, told German tabloid Bild Zeitung.

According Roebke, who helped hand-rear Knut in the Berlin Zoo, Knut is a "publicity-addicted psycho" who needs the show, the human adulation.

"He actually cries out or whimpers if he sees that there is no audience outside his compound ready to 'ooh' and 'aah' at him," Roebke said in the Tuesday edition of Bild Zeitung. "When the zoo had to shut because of black ice everywhere he howled with rage until staff members stood before him and calmed him down."

But the veterinarian charge with the polar bear's upkeep contradicts Roebke's dire appraisal.

"Not so," Andre Schuele, the zoo's vet in charge of Knut, told ABC News in a telephone interview about Roebke's comments. "I can't confirm that at all. Knut is making very good progress, he's growing up just fine, he's a very healthy animal, and everything is really normal."

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