Edinburgh zoo is celebrating their first panda pregnancy, after doctors substituted the female with a spaniel in heat.
Tian Tian had initially appeared reluctant to mate with the male panda, Yang Guang. But by pioneering a technique that saw the female bear trapped under a bucket and replaced with a smallish three year-old dog, experts hoped to dramatically increase the chances of conception.
Expert Brian Sweeney explained that it hadn’t all been plain sailing.
“While Susan the Spaniel was rather more receptive than the frankly frigid Tian Tian, the male panda still didn’t look that arsed”, Sweeney explained. “So we lured him into a cupboard and let a rampant mongrel have a go. You should have seen them go at it, I’ve never seen such horny pandas. They’d still be doing it now, if my assistant hadn’t chucked a bucket of water over them.”
Sweeney is proud of his team’s success. “It’s a controversial technique, but we stand by the little sign on the cage”, he said. “And that sign clearly states they’re ‘pandas’. And there should be nine more of the little critters soon, if my entry in the sweepstake is anything to go by.”