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Moose pays ‘pretty calm’ visit to Alaska hospital building lobby

ANCHORAGE, Alaska — A moose wandered into a hospital building in Alaska’s largest city Monday — and Stephanie Hupton was ready to capture the visit with her phone camera.

Hupton works in billing at a physical therapy office inside a building attached to Alaska Regional Hospital in Anchorage. When a patient mentioned security staffers were monitoring a moose that got inside her building, she dashed out and started recording.

“Didn’t think we’d have a pet moose,” she said.

The footage shows the moose browsing around some greenery near an entrance before it stands gazing at the camera’s direction. It briefly lingers before sauntering out through an open door.

Hupton said she never felt threatened by the mellow creature in her closest ever encounter with one of the massive animals.

It was an experience she never expected when she moved to Anchorage three years ago from Carroll, Iowa. In her home state, Hupton had seen her share of deer and cows, but nothing as exotic as a moose.

“It’s definitely different than small-town Iowa,” she said.

Hospital spokeswoman Kjerstin Lastufka said the moose got inside the building around 11:30 a.m. through doors that were stuck open because of extreme cold in Anchorage, where temperatures hovered around zero on Monday. The plant greenery in the warm lobby was likely inviting to the animal, who ended up eating some of the plants before leaving the building after about 10 minutes inside, Lastufka said.

The animal hung around the premises. Someone reported seeing it around a parking garage late Monday afternoon, Lastufka said.

The moose caused no injuries or any big problems, other than eating some greenery.

“It was a pretty calm visit,” Lastufka said.

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