CHIANG MAI, Thailand: Tigers were fed frozen chicken “popsicles” and enticed to splash in a wading pool at a Thai zoo on Thursday (Apr 1) as temperatures rose.

About 50 of the big cats live at the Tiger Kingdom zoo in Chiang Mai, 700km north of Bangkok, according to Patchara Chanted, coordinator of the tiger handlers there.

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A tiger plays in water at a tiger zoo in Chiang Mai, Thailand on Mar 31, 2021. (Photo: Reuters/Soe Zeya Tun)

A man feeds a tiger cub at a tiger zoo in Chiang Mai, Thailand on Mar 31, 2021. (Photo: Reuters/Soe Zeya Tun)

“Tigers will save their energy during most of the day by lying down or trying to exert themselves as little as possible,” said Patchara. “But if it gets too hot for them, they will start panting like cats or dogs to avoid heat stroke.”

“We provide some activities in the water or a toy to help them cool down.”

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A cheetah licks an ice cube at a zoo in Chiang Mai, Thailand on Mar 31, 2021. (Photo: Reuters/Soe Zeya Tun)

A tiger plays in water at a tiger zoo in Chaing Mai, Thailand on Mar 31, 2021. (Photo: Reuters/Soe Zeya Tun)

Two tigers splashed in a pool, jumping to swat at a bunch of leaves held above the water by a handler. Twice daily during the summer months, the tigers are fed chicken encased in ice blocks.

Thailand’s hot season began at the end of February and temperatures are expected to rise as high as 35 degrees Celsius.

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