When hearing the word breach one may instantly think of a humpback whale gracefully jumping out of the water and landing on their side. There are several species of marine life that partake in this natural behavior. However it is unclear as to the exact reason why an animal may breach, however, some reasons could include socialization, warning predators, or play.
Part of our training includes teaching our animals natural behaviors that they would have learned in the wild. Why teach them natural behaviors? Many of them require large amounts of energy thus providing the animal with exercise. Just like exercise for people and their pets is important to maintain good health, exercise is critical for maintaining good health of our residents. Several of these behaviors may include bows (jumps), flips, tail walk, side breach, and much more.
Currently Panama already knows how to do a side breach and may see her occasionally participating in this behavior on her own. However, John and Sue have been working very closely with Panama for the last several months teaching her to offer this behavior on an Sd (hand signal). This way we can ask her for this behavior to provide her with exercise. Not only would this provide exercise it will also provide a degree of mental stimulation because she will be given the Sd (hand signal) and would have to use her brain to determine what behavior she is to offer.
Sue and John are working on her height and run of her side breach using a target pole. She is progressing well and will hopefully begin fading out the target pole soon. Join us in the Winter Zone to see her progression!