Chaba the baby elephant had no idea what to expect when she was given a fresh water bath for the first time
She was rescued from an elephant riding camp in Thailand where her mother was forced to do circus tricks to entertain tourists.
Thankfully though, rescuers from the Save Elephant Foundation saved her.
“When our team learned about the plight of Chaba and her mother, BunMa, we went to the camp to see how we could help them,” projects director Ry Emmerson told The Dodo.
“We found the mother and baby in a small concrete pen, barren of any enrichment, and the mother on a short chain. It was immediately clear that they were both in poor health and needed urgent intervention.”
The foundation’s founder negotiated with the riding camp for the family’s release, transport was then planned to bring them back to the nature park (ENP).
Unfortunately, the mother was worried about being split up from her baby and therefore wouldn’t get in the truck.
“We decided it was safer for them to walk to our sanctuary,” Emmerson said. “After two hours of walking, they arrived at ENP and were welcomed with an elephant cake.”
After eating her cake, Chaba the baby was given her first bath, and to the surprise of everyone watching, the elephant’s face showed pure delight!
“Chaba is a true water baby! She loved splashing around in the water and then running back to Mum for reassurance. Now, she loves to play in the splash pool with her basketball whilst her mum enjoys some tasty fruit treats.”
Now Chaba and her mother are enjoying a life of freedom to socialize, forage for food, and roll around in the mud.
Chaba though loves her water and is often seen in the pool:
“She loves playing with the water and splashing around,” Save Elephant Foundation wrote on Facebook. “Mom walks away while she is playing and gets a moment to relax. She is growing confident and learning so much.”