The Chimp Suffering From Alopecia

Other males may worry that losing their hair will make them less appealing. But for Guru the chimpanzee, his baldness has turned him into a star attraction. The 20-year-old, who is suffering from alopecia, has lost the hair from all over his body. But the mischievous chimp still brings hundreds of visitors flocking to Mysore Zoo in southern India – despite greeting them by throwing stones. Dr Suresh Kumar, a zoo vet, said: ‘Everybody wants to see his biceps and triceps. ‘He beats his chest, and claps a lot when children come near his enclosure.’ Guru had lost his hair before being rescued from a circus and moved to Vandalur Zoo in Chennai. He lived there for almost a decade, but was transferred to Mysore Zoo seven years ago so that specialist vets could monitor his condition.” w/ photos

Other males may worry that losing their hair will make them less appealing.

But for Guru the chimpanzee, his baldness has turned him into a star attraction.

The 20-year-old, who is suffering from alopecia, has lost the hair from all over his body.

Missing link: The chimp's muscle definition can be seen, making Guru look almost human

Missing link: The chimp’s muscle definition can be seen, making Guru look almost human

Popular: Guru is very popular with the visitors to Mysore Zoo in southern India - though he does cause mischief from time to time, making noise and throwing stones and faeces at them

Popular: Guru is very popular with the visitors to Mysore Zoo in southern India – though he does cause mischief from time to time, making noise and throwing stones and faeces at them

But the mischievous chimp still brings hundreds of visitors flocking to Mysore Zoo in southern India – despite greeting them by throwing stones.

Dr Suresh Kumar, a zoo vet, said: ‘Everybody wants to see his biceps and triceps.

‘He beats his chest, and claps a lot when children come near his enclosure.’

Guru had lost his hair before being rescued from a circus and moved to Vandalur Zoo in Chennai.

He lived there for almost a decade, but was transferred to Mysore Zoo seven years ago so that specialist vets could monitor his condition.

Dr Kumar said: ‘He came to us with alopecia, so we don’t know how he got it originally.

Hairless: Guru, the 20-year-old male chimp suffering with alopecia, is a star attraction at an Indian zoo, as he looks like a human

Hairless: Guru, the 20-year-old male chimp suffering with alopecia, is a star attraction at an Indian zoo, as he looks like a human

Treated: Guru is taking medication for the alopecia, but Dr Suresh Kumar, a zoo vet said: 'There have been no positive results and as a last resort we are planning to consult a human skin doctor.'

Treated: Guru is taking medication for the alopecia, but Dr Suresh Kumar, a zoo vet said: ‘There have been no positive results and as a last resort we are planning to consult a human skin doctor.’

‘However, with chimpanzees being so much like humans, we think it could have been caused by factors in Guru’s life such a stress or trauma, which can induce alopecia in humans. We have tried a number of medicines on him, but to date there have been no positive results, and as a last resort we are planning to consult a human skin doctor.’

Fortunately, Guru’s baldness doesn’t seem to have affected his popularity among his own species. To stop him getting lonely, zoo officials have allowed a female chimpanzee, Manila, to move into his enclosure.

But although Guru plays cheerfully with her, he hasn’t taken things any further – to the surprise of his handlers.

Dr Kumar said: ‘He got separated from his parents at a tender age and most probably this could be a reason that he hasn’t learned to mate.’

Here’s what readers have had to say so far. Why not add your thoughts below, or debate this issue live on our message boards.

The comments below have been moderated in advance.

Looking at these pictures of this hairless ape, outlines much more clearly the structure of its body and we can see just how closely we are related to these animals.

Just look at those arms, almost identical to any muscular man.

Click to rate Rating 22

Serves to remind me that zoo’s are inherently cruel for the animals trapped forever in them. God gave them the freedom of the earth, man imprisons them for his own amusement……

Click to rate Rating 10

Poor poor boy… Clearly lost his hair due to stress of being in a circus all his life!

Truly amazing how human like this animal is! The fore arms and biceps are identical to that of a mans!

i really hate to see any wild animal living in captivity, just for the entertainment of humans! I know zoo’s do a lot of good but i just find it very upsetting! It must drive those poor animals crazy!

Click to rate Rating 18

Poor poor boy… Clearly lost his hair due to stress of being in a circus all his life!

Truly amazing how human like this animal is! The fore arms and biceps are identical to that of a mans!

i really hate to see any wild animal living in captivity, just for the entertainment of humans! I know zoo’s do a lot of good but i just find it very upsetting! It must drive those poor animals crazy!

Click to rate Rating 8

Bring the poor thing to this country to Monkeyworld where he can behave like a natural animal and live with others. He will surely have hair growing in no time……he looks SO unhappy and lonely :(

- Jackie, England, 21/10/2010 15:47

you are joking?????? how can any animal locked in a cage behave naturally?

Click to rate Rating 9

Poor thing – this captivity of an intelligent being is so cruel.

Click to rate Rating 65

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