You think it’s EASY taking the blood pressure of a gorilla? It had never been done.. until now.


“How much will you pay me if I say yes?”

Zoo Atlanta is the first and only zoo in the world to do awake gorilla blood pressures.

Ozzie, one of Zoo Atlanta’s male gorillas, and his keeper Jodi Carrigan have been working together for seven years….

“Heart disease is very serious in the captive population” said director of veterinary services at Zoo Atlanta Dr. Hayley Murphy. “About forty two percent of the animals are affected, and those animals go on to die from the disease itself.”

The problem of heart disease in captive gorillas has haunted researchers for years.

“We don’t really know what causes cardiac disease” Dr. Murphy said. “Our theory is it’s blood pressure. But we can’t prove that until we get awake blood pressures.”…

While Jodi Carrigan was trying to train Ozzie Zoo Atlanta turned to a design team from Georgia Tech to invent a gorilla blood pressure sleeve….

It took Jodi Carrigan five months to convince Ozzie to do it….

Now Ozzie puts his arm in the specially designed sleeve and keeps it there, while veterinarian Michelle Moses feeds him pudding.

“So he knows” described Jodi Carrigan, “…okay…I’m holding still. This is what they want from me. And I’m getting rewarded for it.”

Related Link: Ozzie, Zoo Atlanta, and the Gorilla Tough Cuff

3 thoughts on “You think it’s EASY taking the blood pressure of a gorilla? It had never been done.. until now.

  1. Morey says:

    Unfortunately, encouraged to hear of the great success of the first awake blood pressure check for gorillas, a keeper in another zoo attempted the first awake gorilla rectal exam– and was never heard from again….

    • Jägermeister says:

      LOL – Reminds me of this joke:

      A priest, a minister, and a rabbi want to see who’s best at his job. So they each go into the woods, find a bear, and attempt to convert it. Later they get together. The priest begins: “When I found the bear, I read to him from the Catechism and sprinkled him with holy water. Next week is his First Communion.” “I found a bear by the stream,” says the minister, “and preached God’s Holy Word. The bear was so mesmerized that he let me baptize him.” They both look down at the rabbi, who is lying on a gurney in a body cast. “Looking back,” he says, “maybe I shouldn’t have started with the circumcision.”

      Stolen from The Funniest Joke in the World (nope, it didn’t win).

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