Asian Elephant addicted to coke

"A once drug-addled elephant fed heroin-laced bananas by illegal traders will return home after emerging clean from a three-year detox program on China's tropical island province of Hainan.
The four-year-old bull elephant, referred to alternately as "Big Brother" or "Xiguang" in state media reports, was captured in 2005 in southwest China by traders who used spiked bananas to control him.

After police arrested the traders and freed Xiguang a few months later, the elephant was confirmed to be suffering from withdrawal symptoms and sent to a wild animal protection centre in Hainan for rehab, Xinhua news agency said on Thursday.

A year of methadone injections at five times the human dosage had helped wean Xiguang off his addiction."


huH? What I don't understand is why it took 3 years to get him off it? A year of injections to help wean him off? It seems a little excessive to wean an elephant of narcotics. I could see them giving him a little bit for a few weeks to help with the withdraws, but for a whole year? If there was a human rehab program, I could see a lot more people actually going, and staying.
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