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Gus the Polar Bear
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Animal
    (1985-August 27, 2013)
    Born in Toledo, Ohio
    Transfered to the Central Park Zoo in New York City (August, 1988)
    Euthanized due to an inoperable thyroid tumor at age 27
    He began swimming repetitively in figure-eight patterns for up to twelve hours a day (1994).
    He became the first zoo animal to take Prozac.
    His obsessive swimming tapered off after a few months, but never disappeared.
    He inspired puns about 'bipolar bears.'
    PeTA inevitably seized upon him as evidence that zoos are evil.
    Rachael Ray prepared a meal of tilapia for him and his mate Ida (2006).
    He was an icon of the Central Park Zoo, visited by over 20 million people during his life.
    His neuroses seemed to make him more popular with New Yorkers. (Not unlike Woody Allen.)
    An animal behavior therapist said, 'Gus is just bored and mildly crazy in the way that a lot of people are in New York.'
    His obsessive swimming improved after the zoo implemented an 'enrichment program' that included changes to his habitat, mealtime challenges (such as putting live trout in the pool for him to chase) and new toys.
    He inspired two children's books, a humor book for adults, a play, and a song by the Tragically Hip.

Credit: C. Fishel


    For 2019, as of last week, Out of 9 Votes: 44.44% Annoying
    In 2018, Out of 13 Votes: 46.15% Annoying
    In 2017, Out of 1 Votes: 0% Annoying
    In 2016, Out of 7 Votes: 71.43% Annoying
    In 2015, Out of 3 Votes: 33.33% Annoying
    In 2014, Out of 17 Votes: 11.76% Annoying
    In 2013, Out of 35 Votes: 40.0% Annoying
 
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