There's cute and then there's cute. Oolong is a male red panda cub at Binder Park Zoo, born in late June. Oolong's first days touched by tragedy as his mother, Cinnamon died of pneumonia in early August. This forced experts at Binder Park Zoo to intervene with special care for the newborn Oolong.

Weighing in at 588 grams or 1.3 pounds, Oolong is about 25% smaller than most red panda cubs of the same age due to a disorder known as congenital hypothyroidism, caused by a lack of active thyroid hormone. Oolong’s condition is improving with treatment and a diet consisting of Esbilac, a milk replacer formula for puppies that has him thriving and gaining weight.- Binder Park Zoo release

Zookeepers say Oolong is full of personality, "playful, rambunctious and curious as he ambles about his surroundings, his squeaks and snorts are typical red panda vocalizations as he responds to the keepers."

Oolong, male red panda at Binder Park Zoo (Photo provided by Binder Park Zoo)

Oolong is currently being cared for in the nursery of the vet hospital and this is where you can see him during his feedings and when he is  being socialized. The zoo says the schedule for this is approximately "for 30-45 minutes at 10:00am, 1:00pm and 4:00pm. Oolong also has access to a crate where he may choose to nap or hang out during the rest of the time."

Oolong, male red panda at Binder Park Zoo (Photo provided by Binder Park Zoo)

The red panda (Ailurus fulgens), also known as the lesser panda, red bear-cat, or red cat-bear is a mammal native to the eastern Himalayas and southwestern China. It has reddish-brown fur, a long, shaggy tail, and a waddling gait due to its shorter front legs and is roughly the size of a domestic cat, It is arboreal, feeds mainly on bamboo, but also eats eggs, birds, and insects. It is a solitary animal, mainly active from dusk to dawn, and is largely sedentary during the day. The red panda has been classified as endangered by the IUCN, because its wild population is estimated at less than 10,000 mature individuals and continues to decline due to habitat loss and fragmentation, poaching, and inbreeding depression. Binder Park Zoo release

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