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Saturday, October 24, 2020

Delhi: Akhila, a zoo lioness who suffered from paralysis for 9 years, dies

The actual cause of death will be ascertained after post-mortem and visceral examinations.

By: PTI | Delhi | October 7, 2020 9:37:11 am
Delhi, Delhi zoo, Delhi zoo akhila, Akila lionness Delhi zoo, Delhi zoo lion dies, Delhi news, Indian ExpressA lion relaxing at a zoo in New Delhi. (Express Photo: Prem Nath Pandey, File)

An 11-year-old lioness, who had been suffering from paralysis for nine years, died at the Delhi zoo on Tuesday after developing “pulmonary-renal complications”, according to officials. Zoo Director Ramesh Pandey said Akhila was unwell for around a month. She breathed her last on Tuesday evening.

“She had apparently developed pulmonary-renal complications, loss of appetite and dehydration in the last few days,” he said in a statement.

The actual cause of death will be ascertained after post-mortem and visceral examinations.

Akhila was born in the zoo on May 19, 2009. She had developed “nervine disorders and hind quarter paralysis” at an early age, he said.

Akhila was provided a kraal and taken care of as a special child by the zoo staff for many years. She was given the best possible treatment for her complex and chronic illness.

“The expert opinion of the Indian Veterinary Research Institute, Bareilly, veterinary officials of Etawah Lion Safari and others were taken from time to time,” Pandey said.

The lioness was close to all the zookeepers, especially those who had hand-reared the animal in her childhood, the director said.

Akhila’s sibling, 11-year-old lion Sundaram, also suffered a paralysis attack in August. He was intensively monitored and treated at the veterinary hospital of the zoo, with the help of medical experts from Lion Safari, Etawah, and IVRI, Bareilly.

Pandey said Sundaram’s condition has improved.

The average lifespan of lions in the wild is 14 years.

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