Around 12 members of staff and other helpers that included vets and dental experts were brought in to treat the 75 stone animal.
The polar bear Arktos is normally playful but was found to be under the weather. Thankfully, keepers at the wildlife centre have trained the bear to open his mouth and the team were able to examine the polar bear’s mouth without someone getting hurt.
With 47 razor sharp teeth to examine this inevitably took some time to do. However, the medical staff found the problem quickly and anaesthetised the 5 year old bear to place him in a specially designed ‘dentist chair’.
Speaking with reporters, Douglas Richardson, a spokesperson for the Highland Wildlife Park, said that they train their large animals to cooperate during regular health checks, which as a result makes it easier to diagnose problems and give the animals care.
He added that they were delighted to be able to save Arktos’ tooth and that the infection would have caused the polar bear much more pain and discomfort in the wild, even potential death.
Polar bears are believed to suffer a lot with toothache in the wild, broken and infected teeth being a particular problem.
Arktos is very lucky in getting the care he receives.