It’s a slam dunk for this sea otter!
At 15-year-old’s, veterinarians at the Oregon Zoo discovered Eddie was suffering from elbow arthritis and prescribed him therapeutic exercise for his aching joints.
And basketball was the choice of sports.
Now, Eddie’ routine consists of dunking a ball through a plastic hoop in a training pool behind-the-scenes of his exhibit area at the zoo, and according to the marine life keepers at the Zoo, this sea otter definitely has his game on.
“He’s definitely got game,” Jenny DeGroot, the zoo’s lead sea otter keeper, said in a press release. “Sea otters have incredible dexterity, so it makes sense Eddie would have this hidden talent. They’re famous for using rocks as tools to crack open clams.”
Zoo veterinarians say that Eddie is at an age that’s considered “geriatric” for his species.
“We had to get creative,” DeGroot explained in the press release. “There aren’t many natural opportunities for Eddie to work those arthritic elbow joints, because sea otters don’t use their front limbs to swim—they swim by moving their back legs and flippers. So training him with the basketball hoop was a way to get Eddie using those front limbs more regularly.”
According to his keepers, Eddie enjoys the exercise, and his age has yet to slow him down.
Watch Eddie in action below…