Download: Malayan tapir calf at Denver Zoo, Colorado

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Staff at the Denver Zoo saved the life of a Malayan tapir calf when they took extraordinary efforts during a recent birthing.

Rinny was having trouble while giving birth to a calf last month, and a staffer freed the newborn from its amniotic sac.

After successfully delivering the calf, zoo staffers aided the newborn by performing "mouth to snout rescue breaths," the zoo said in a media release Friday.

The staff helped the calf get liquid out of his lungs and breathe.

"It's always a little scary when something like this happens, but thankfully we all have great resources and training," said Rebecca McCloskey, an assistant curator with the zoo.

McCloskey, along with staff veterinarian Gwen Jankowski, took the life-saving measures during the difficult birth on Sept. 3.

Now the male tapir, named Dumadi, is doing fine, walking and swimming as he grows at the zoo. Rinny is also doing well after the birth, which was the first tapir birth at the Denver Zoo, officials said.

Rinny, among the smallest of the pachyderms, joined the zoo in November 2010 and lives in the new Toyota Elephant Passage exhibit. There are believed to be fewer than 2,000 Malayan tapirs in the wild.

Rinny made news in June, when she escaped by squeezing through the cables around her enclosure. A fence separated Rinny from guests. As soon as the keeper unlocked the padlocked gate separating walkabout Rinny from home, she ran back inside, officials said.

No harm came of the incident, although she was grounded for a while.