When Mickey, a young Baird's tapir, arrived at the Zoo in 1934, she was was thin and sickly, and she wouldn't eat. Belle Benchley had Mickey moved near her office so she could keep an eye on her and take care of her. The next morning, Belle cooked a mash of ground corn, oats, and milk, brought the pan into Mickey's pen, and sat down near it. Mickey came to investigate, and seemed interested in the food. She turned to Belle, who patted her encouragingly. Mickey began to eat, stopping periodically to get more pats from Belle. Every morning for the rest of the summer, Belle came to the Zoo at 7 a.m. to give Mickey her breakfast, accompanied by petting and scratching. Mickey grew healthy, strong, and glossy—and she grew quite attached to Belle, as Belle did to her. Even after Mickey moved on to her own enclosure at the Zoo, all Belle had to do was come by and call her name, and Mickey would come trotting up to see the surrogate mother who had saved her life. Zookeepers call the group of animals they regularly care for their "string," and throughout her life, Mickey was always referred to as "Mrs. Benchley's string."