On April 9, 1945, Soviet troops stormed the German fortress city Konigsberg and rescued the German hippo.
The emblem of the Kaliningrad zoo depicts the behemoth. But few visitors know that this hippo was saved by Soviet soldiers 74 years ago. And it was like that.
In April 1945, as a result of fierce fighting, Soviet troops captured the city-fortress Königsberg, the commandant of the fortress, General Otto Lyash, capitulated.
When the German command came out of the bunker, then everyone was just stunned – the city they defended no longer existed. Koenigsberg was destroyed by 90 percent, representing ruins and ruins alone. Everything was burning …
The famous Königsberg zoo also lay in ruins. Only four animals survived the war – a fallow deer, a donkey, a badger and a hippopotamus. The last beast, 18 years old, was found by fighters of the Red Army not far from the menagerie, in the rivulet.
During the storming of the city, several crazy bullets hit the animal, which the soldiers christened Hans, and spent 13 days without food and water. Spas Hans military poldersky Vladimir Petrovich Polonsky, who by the summer of the 45th was leaving the animal.
Here is how he himself describes the treatment history of the hippopotamus (spelling preserved, – VG):
“I took treatment to Behemoth from April 14 with. (1945). First assisted by water. Later tried to give him milk. Next time ground beet. Hippo began to eat. But after 3 days refused. I hurried to give Behemoth vodka. Gave 4 liters. After that, Hippo began to strongly ask to eat. I first gave him an enema (4 buckets of distilled water). Then he began to feed him. Hippo tried to go out, but since he was drunk, he dropped himself. Lateral injury (25 × 27 cm). Depth 4 cm. Another wound (6 × 7). Hippo began to eat, but does not recover. I put the 2nd time enema (4 buckets of dis. Water). Hippo began to recover. 2 weeks have passed. Hippo eats poorly. I decided to give vodka, 4 liters. Hippo began to eat well. But back turned constipation. I put another enema (4 buckets of disc. Water). Hippo recovers, but eats badly. I decided to give vodka (4 liters). And Hippo began to eat well. There were unappetizing days. I eliminated them by changing the food … “
On the results of the treatment of Hans, the military specialist Vladimir Petrovich Polonsky wrote briefly:
“We managed to save the hippo. Without departing from it after 21 days, after 1 month. and 19 days, I have achieved complete health and are now engaged in the training of a hippopotamus – riding a hippopotamus in the park, etc. “
On June 27, 1947, the Kaliningrad Zoo celebrated its “second” birthday. At this point, his collection consisted of 50 animals, including the German hippo Hans, saved from certain death.
Valery Gromak, especially for the Russian Spring
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