Party's Over for Celebrity Polar Bear

Berlin Zoo pulls plug on superstar cub's public tussling with keepers
By Sam Gale Rosen,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 9, 2007 11:37 AM CDT

(Newser) – The Berlin Zoo is putting the kibosh on the crowd-pleasing daily wrestling match between celebrity polar bear Knut and his keepers. He'll still be on display, but at just over 7 months old, Knut tips the scales at 110 pounds, and his increasing ferocity has been making the "Knut and Thomas Show" look less like "Sesame Street" and more like "Wild Kingdom."

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The play fighting has left "Knut and Thomas Show" costar Thomas Dorflein—who's become a celebrity in his own right since the bear went on display in March—bruised, but human health isn't the only consideration. The fickle crowds have thinned, says a zoo vet, since Knut started becoming "less attractive to those people who like cute young animals." (Read more Knut stories.)

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