Russians save elephants with distilled potatoes?

Kevin Doonan

Today in the news there was a story about a Russian zoo director claiming vodka saved the lives of two elephants. When the elephant’s trailer caught on fire, they were forced to wait, exposed to the elements, in the deadly cold of a Siberian winter until back up was able to arrive. Despite spending hours in the frigid cold, the elephants only suffered minor frostbite on the tips of their ears.

How were they able to escape this potentially life threatening scenario virtually unscathed? By drinking 10 liters of vodka diluted with warm water, claims zoo director Rostislav Shilo. The ten liters of liquor, enough to kill a grown man and the mother that bore him, was reportedly not even enough to hamper the walking mountain’s ability to operate a motorized vehicle. Yet it was apparently enough to save them the pain of breaking off frostbitten extremities despite the fact that alcohol thins the blood and lowers the body’s core temperature.

What a stereotype though, Russians curing the cold with vodka, God forbid they tried using a blanket. Now what will the rest of the staff drink?