“Carcass Day”

The happiest day of a young African wild dog’s life.

Were you looking for an update on the Cincinnati Zoo’s African wild dog pups? Of course you were. Fair warning, though: after adorably going outside for the first time, and adorably going for a swim, this latest installment is slightly less adorable.

Taking part in what zoo director Thane Maynard—with a huge smile on his face—introduces as “carcass day,” the dogs are given a full goat carcass to feast on, fur and all. And feast they do. According to Maynard, within a day and a half every piece of the goat will be gone, from the meat to the bones. And no, that’s not gross. They’re wild animals. Growing wild animals.

In addition to diversifying the pups’ diets, the act of taking apart a carcass is especially beneficial to the wild dogs, since they’re extremely social animals accustomed to hunting and feeding packs. At least momentarily, carcass day partially recreates their feeding habits as they may be in their native sub-Saharan Africa.

Watch the video above for a look in on the dogs’ full goat feast. And with that, we conclude the latest episode of African wild dogs, live from Cincinnati.