Michel Jutras Doesn't Win Any Trophies for Cleaning Hippo Teeth, but He Does Get Plenty of Plaque
updated 06/15/1987 AT 01:00 AM EDT
•originally published 06/15/1987 AT 01:00 AM EDT
When the hippo opens wide, it's obvious that more than dental floss will be needed. Jutras uses an industrial-size scrub brush but without the benefit of toothpaste. The zoo's mascot and oldest resident, Patriarche (his name means patriarch) eats sensibly. With his diet of hay and grain, supplemented with minerals and vitamins, his breath isn't too offensive. But his visits with Jutras add an extra sparkle to his smile and—who knows?—may even contribute to his success with the female of his species. "Patriarche," Lanthier says proudly, "has already given us nine babies."