PHOTOS: Our 10 Favorite, Fabulously Adorable Bao Bao Moments

In just days, 3-year-old Bao Bao will leave the National Zoo and move to a breeding center in China. As we count down every heartbreaking moment until Feb. 21, here are our 10 favorite moments of Bao Bao's fabulously adorable life back in the day.

10 photos
Smithsonian's National Zoo
Granted, there were many more serious things to worry about during the 2013 government shutdown -- but the public outcry over the panda cam's going dark was not exactly small. By the time the cam went live again, Bao Bao weighed almost five pounds and her eyes had begun to open.
Smithsonian's National Zoo
Look, legs are hard. They are tricky and confusing and you have to use all of them together. Bao Bao had to put in some serious effort to meet this milestone in November 2013.
Smithsonian's National Zoo
OK, we get it: This was not exactly a milestone to stop the presses. But just look at this ridiculous video. Is your brain exploding from cuteness yet?
Smithsonian Magazine
Bao Bao’s very first feature showed off some gorgeous photos and shared weird panda facts. (Here's one: Pandas never actually evolved to eat bamboo, but have inexplicably lost their taste for meat.) The article also tried to sort out humans’ obsession with pandas. The likely reason: Just look at them.
Oak Room/Getty Images
Both U.S. First Lady Michelle Obama and Chinese First Lady Peng Liyuan recorded videos for the ceremony in December 2013, held on Bao Bao's 100th day of life. "Bao Bao symbolizes 41 years of research and collaboration both at the National Zoo and in China," said zoo director Dennis Kelly.
Smithsonian's National Zoo
Way back in Bao Bao's tiniest days, mama Mei Xiang passed over snacking opportunities so she could continue to snuggle her cub. Yes, Bao Bao had just that kind of power.
Smithsonian's National Zoo
It's enough to want to put a helmet on the little critter. As Bao Bao began exploring her den more, she naturally gravitated toward that cool rock structure. She looked sure-footed... at first. Fortunately, mama Mei Xiang quickly came to her rescue.
Hugh Jackman
Hugh Jackman was in town to host the "Christmas in Washington" special in 2013, which the first family also attended. But with whom did he get a photo first? Well, it wasn't the president.
Smithsonian's National Zoo
Since panda fetuses are almost impossible to detect via ultrasound, Bao Bao’s unexpected birth on Aug. 23, 2013 was like getting a surprise party with all your best friends, and also with a donut truck parked right outside. The big moment was captured on video, and zoo vets say the footage has greatly contributed to their knowledge of panda moms' labors and deliveries.
Smithsonian's National Zoo
It was the video that launched a thousand YouTube windows. Bao Bao -- still unnamed at the time -- hated being measured, and her vocalizations sounded something like, "OWW! OWW! OWW!" OK, Bao Bao, we've never had tails, but we doubt it actually hurts to have one measured. Even so, our sympathy was with you.
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