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Fort Wayne Children's Zoo's dingo pups grown up

The 2-week old pups captured hearts across the nation with this photo taken on Valentine's Day. (Courtesy photo)
The 2-week old pups captured hearts across the nation with this photo taken on Valentine's Day. (Courtesy photo)
Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.The Associated Press
Friday, October 05, 2012 05:38 pm
Oct. 4, 2012 If you visited the zoo this season, you know that the adorable little dingo pups born on Jan. 30 are no longer little, but they're still adorable!

Mattie and Naya turned out to be great parents for their brood of seven puppies. Naya's patience while nursing seven hungry babies and Mattie's fatherly discipline have produced strong and energetic youngsters, although it's now hard to tell the puppies from their parents!

The male pups, for example, weigh around 40 pounds, just a few pounds less than their dad.

The pups carry important genetics: Mattie and Naya are one of only about 75 pairs of pure dingoes worldwide.

In July, male pup Brumby and female pup Elzey left Fort Wayne for the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo, where they are featured in their own exhibit.

Two other pups, male Mawson and female Tingoora, live here in a separate barn behind the scenes while they are evaluated as potential animal ambassadors for Fort Wayne Children's Zoo education programs.

That leaves Mattie, Naya, and three pups (Yengo, Bunyip, and Airlie) remaining in the exhibit, and these pups provide plenty of playful activity! Visit them before the zoo closes on Oct. 14 (just one week form Sunday)!

Learn more about dingoes and watch videos at http://kidszoo.org/our-animals/australian-adventure/dingo.They're cute, they're fuzzy, and they're available for adoption! Adopt a prairie dog at the Fort Wayne Children's Zoo, and you'll receive:

*A toy stuffed prairie dog

*Personalized wallet card

*Photo of a prairie dog

*Personalized adoption certificate

*Fact sheet about prairie dog

*Letter from the zoo director

*Recognition on the zoo's website

Adoptions make perfect gifts for animal lovers. Adopt online at http://kidszoo.org/support-the-zoo/adopt-an-animal,or by contacting Cassandra at 427-6831 or by e-mail at development@kidszoo.org.Excitement is building for the opening of the Wild Zoo Halloween in just two weeks! Corn stalks are "sprouting" on the grounds, talented staffers are painting kid-favorite characters on pumpkins, and truckloads of pumpkins, gourds and straw are on their way.

This week is your last chance to register for the 2nd annual Scarecrow Safari and be entered to win a zoo field trip valued at $139! Download contest rules and start planning your entry at http://kidszoo.org/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/2012_Scarecrow_safari_entry_form.The zoo is honored to be part of an initiative celebrating the many resources that make Fort Wayne a great place to live and work for young professionals.

Our own zookeeper Nikki Finch is featured in the video, and she shares her passion for her job so eloquently. We are proud to be part of this exciting, vibrant, and generous community. Watch the video at http://yourstorymadehere.com/story/a-place-for-memories#.UG9W5K7geqw.

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