Lifestyle & Belief

Vodka saves elephants from freezing to death in Siberia


A baby elephant playing in a river in their daily outing from the Pinnawela Elephant Orphanage in Sri Lanka.



This story has a truly universal message: When you bring circus elephants to the Siberian forest, make sure to share your vodka.

Two Russian elephants almost died after their wooden trailer caught fire in Siberia, forcing them outside in the biting cold, BBC News reported. The elephants are in the Polish circus, and were in the region as part of a tour. 

To ward off the chill, trainer Leonid Labo had the elephants drink 2.6 gallons of vodka diluted in warm water, The Komsomolskaya Pravda daily reported. Zoo director Rostislav Shilo said that the vodka saved the animals from frostbite without harming or intoxicating them.

"They started roaring like if they were in the jungle! Perhaps, they were happy," an official told Ria Novosti.

Or perhaps they were drunk and cold and yelling about how much they hated the circus. 

Eventually a truck arrived to deliver the animals to a warm gym at a local college, the Associated Press reported. Scientists say that alcohol makes animals feel warmer, just as it does for humans. However, it actually lowers their core body temperature.