Freed Lab Chimpanzee Amazed After Seeing the Sky For The First Time In Decades

Jul 03, 2023 by apost team

Animals deserve better treatment in the world as some species are secretly being used in laboratories for different reasons. Since they are being held captive for years, the conditions of these animals are bad, and they are not being taken care of properly.

Fortunately, there are many organizations worldwide that are working to save these species, and one of the lucky ones is a chimpanzee named Vanilla, who finally got the chance to see the sky in 2023. He spent almost three decades at a laboratory.

According to the New York Post, the chimpanzee, who was 29 years old at the time of his release, came from the Laboratory for Experimental Medicine and Surgery in Primates or LEMSIP in Tuxedo, New York.

Vanilla was said to be born in the facility in 1995, and upon being welcomed into the world, she was separated from her mother.

The chimpanzees in the New York-based laboratory were kept in some of the worst conditions as they spent their time in wire-mesh cages, which experts said was cruel.

The reason why they were enclosed in those cages was that it was easy for workers to hose down feces. Although it was convenient for them, it was a cruel condition for these animals as they were forced to eat their food and sleep above their waste. 

According to Dan Mathews, the director of events and special projects for the animal sanctuary Save the Chimps, the facility where Vanilla came from was “horrible” as the animals were tested for HIV and hepatitis.

Researchers reportedly drew blood from the animals and did biopsies, which led to them being infected with different diseases. However, Mathews clarified that it’s unsure if Vanilla was one of the animals who got an illness.

Be sure to reach the end of this article to see the full video :-)

In a video posted in June 2023 on Save the Chimp’s official Facebook page, Vanilla could be seen walking out of a window and appearing to be in awe of the sky as it was her first time seeing it. Initially, she was hesitant to go out, but a fellow chimpanzee named Dwight encouraged her. She then stepped out and gave him a big hug while still being amazed by the sky.

Vanilla later interacted with a large family group of the same species and spent her time relaxing around the grass field and even playing with other animals around the sanctuary.

The chimp was not alone as her sister, named Shake, was also brought into the sanctuary. Now, they finally have freedom of their own on a 3-acre island.

“Chimps have 98.8% of DNA similarity with humans,” Dan Mathews told the New York Post on why Vanilla’s reaction was humanlike.

Even though the chimpanzee siblings are in good hands now, it took them a long time before amassing freedom. After the LEMSIP closed down, over 100 chimps were relocated.

Vanilla and Shake first spent their time at the Wildlife Waystation in Los Angeles, but it wasn’t an ideal place for them because it became a “dumping ground” for animals who were being discarded. The area was said to be as big as a garage. Then finally, the California Department of Fish and Wildlife got in touch with North American Primate Sanctuary Alliance to find the siblings a proper location where they could spend the rest of their lives. 

“Vanilla has a long future; she can live here for another 30 or 40 years. She seems elated to have her own world, to finally have the closest thing to a natural habitat. She is embracing it,” Mathews said.

What do you think of the chimpanzees' reaction to seeing the sky for the first time in almost three decades? Did it make you emotional? Let us know your thoughts, and make sure to pass this on to your friends and family.

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