This morning our veterinary team, in consultation with our specialist Carnivore keepers, made the tough but kindest call to euthanise our very elderly male cheetah Osiris.
Osiris was 12.5 years old (above the upper life expectancy for cheetahs in zoos, and years beyond cheetah survival in the wild). Like his twin brother Anubis, who we farewelled in September, Osiris had age-related degenerative health issues including arthritis and loss of body condition. He had slowed down progressively in recent weeks, and since the weekend his mobility had declined further.
“As with any very old animal, we’ve been monitoring Osiris very closely for some time, and given his age, this inevitable decline was not unexpected. While we have been able to manage his pain with anti-inflammatory pain relief, it is not able to cure his irreversible degenerative diseases, so this has absolutely been the right call", says Dr James Chatterton, Veterinary Services Manager.
Carnivore team leader Lauren Booth, who has cared for and worked closely with both Anubis and Osiris for nearly 11 years, says “while it’s been really heart-breaking to have to say goodbye to these two incredible big cats, there is much to celebrate about them”.