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'Root Canal' for Young Elephant? Zoo Removes Calf Tusk After Infection

The 2-year-old calf underwent a procedure similar to a root canal and is taking fruit-flavored antibiotics.

An elephant calf at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park needs to have a tusk removed because of infection after the horn was broken eight weeks ago, the zoo announced Thursday.

Emanti, 2, underwent a procedure similar to a root canal three weeks ago to remove infected pulp inside the tusk.

But Thursday, veterinarian Jim Oosterhuis gave Emanti a checkup and discovered more infected tissue. He decided the tusk will have to be removed to prevent further health problems, the zoo reported.

The elephant is taking fruit-flavored antibiotics to fight the infection.

The zoo said animal care staff have performed 10 dental procedures on elephants over the past two years and also routinely check over their ears, feet and trunks.

—City News Service

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