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  • (cheerful music)

  • - [Voiceover] Blakely has the most difficult job

  • in Cincinnati Zoo, he has to play with babies all the time.

  • (squeaking)

  • (hissing)

  • He's never shown any aggression or snapped.

  • If he gets upset, kinda like any mom would,

  • he just leaves the room. (laughing)

  • - [Voiceover] You are so cute!

  • - My name is Dawn Strasser, and we're

  • at the Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden

  • Blakely is a five year old Australian Shepherd.

  • We got him from a rescue.

  • And I use him in the nursery as a nanny, or companion dog.

  • This is about you, and you're taking a nap!

  • Blakely's here for the main purpose of teaching the babies

  • the correct animal cues as they grow up,

  • so when they are introduced back to their own kind,

  • they know what appropriate behavior is.

  • He teaches them how to play, how to interact.

  • I can tell them, no don't bite me, but I'm not an animal

  • and I don't give the same cues that he can.

  • So we make a great team.

  • (cheerful music)

  • - [Voiceover] Smile for the camera!

  • - [Dawn] Blakely has worked with cheetahs, ocelots,

  • a takin, bat-eared foxes, a warthog,

  • wallabies, to name a few.

  • He's working with four baby cheetahs right now.

  • It's been a long seven weeks for him

  • with these little cheetah cubs, and he's, I think, tired.

  • He's on alert for 24 hours a day.

  • If they start making too much noise, he'll come and get us.

  • Like, something's not right, something's not right.

  • He's kinda like a second set of eyes for us, too.

  • A lot of times they still recognize each other,

  • like Dale the takin he raised, when they see each other,

  • Dale'll still run up in front and grunt at him,

  • and he'll kinda jump up on the wall and it's kinda like,

  • hey, how ya doin'?

  • - He's beautiful.

  • - [Dawn] Thank you!

  • Yeah, well, I like to think I have an office,

  • but I'm pretty sure it's his.

  • (light cheerful music)

(cheerful music)

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