On November 20, 2008, the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium became the home of two of the most adorable babies you’ve ever seen – three week old cheetah cubs named Ro and Reh (pronounced “Ray”). Born on October 28 at the Cincinnati Zoo, these tiny cheetahs came to the Columbus Zoo to be a part of the Zoo’s Promotions/Animal Encounters educational outreach department. Once trained and ready to go, these amazing babies will become ambassadors for their wild cousins worldwide, teaching people around the country about cheetahs and cheetah conservation.
The two brothers, now nearly 13 weeks old, are growing rapidly. They also hate to be separated – male cheetahs in the wild, especially brothers, often stay together for life. But, since it’s not possible that these two will always be able to travel together, the Zoo adopted two more adorable babies to be the cheetah’s companions and playmates. These babies are Anatolian Shepherds, sisters, born on October 26, two days before the cheetahs. So now, when the cheetahs are separated, they’ll still have a companion – just in the form of a floppy-legged, adorable puppy.
Reese and Ruth, the Anatolian Shepherd pups, are also littermates. They will grow to be up around 100 pounds when it’s all said and done. And, like Ro and Reh, these two pups will also be trained as education outreach ambassadors for the Zoo – and the pups, too, will help to spread the message of cheetah conservation.
More on that in a later post. For now, let me introduce the Zoo’s cheetah boys and puppy girls.
Ro — He is a lover and always wants to be held. He is dependent on the people around him and very observant. Ro’s personality seems to mirror the personality of Ruth (the puppy), while Reese (the puppy) and Reh’s personalities are more alike. Ro is short for Roho, which means “Spirit.”
Reh — The bigger of the two cheetahs (not by much though), Reh is more independent and adventurous than his brother. He loves to play and climb as much as he can. Reh is a little lighter in color than Ro. Reh is short for Sherehey (She-ray-hey), which means “celebration.”
Both cats for the most part are full of energy and very rambunctious.
Reese — She came to Columbus a few weeks before her sister. From the beginning she was feisty – she still is – and is protective of the Promotions office where she and cheetahs live. She barks when new people come to the office. She loves to play with her sister and is usually the ringleader of trouble.
Ruth — She is much calmer than her sister, Reese. She loves to be held and carried around. She was the first one to learn how to sit and does it whenever anyone walks near the treat jar. Ruth is also a little lazier than Reese – she values her naptime more than her sister does.