Pandemonium: Dogs dyed to look like pandas

Sleeping giant panda baby

Pandas can be a cash cow for zoos that house them but what happens when a zoo doesn’t have any pandas but still wants to put them on display?

You’ve heard of a wolf in sheep’s clothing but how about a dog in panda dye?

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A zoo in China’s Jiangsu Province has a pair of “panda dogs” on display, UPI reported. But while they may look like the big black and white colored bears, they aren’t.

That’s because the Taizhou Zoo’s pandas were dogs — chow chows that had been dyed to look like pandas.

Chow chows originate from northern China, Sky News reported.

A zoo spokesperson admitted that the dogs were stand-ins since the park doesn’t have any real pandas, but stressed that the dye they used wasn’t harmful to the animals.

A zoo employee told The Global Times, a Chinese state-run media outlet, that the “panda dogs” signs at the enclosure explain that the animals are not pandas, but are instead chow chows, so it isn’t meant to be deceptive.

But lawyers said “inevitably the visitors will feel disappointed and deceived upon discovering the truth,” The Global Times reported.

Still, the zoo charged 20 yuan or $2.77 to see the dogs, Sky News reported.

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