RIP Baby Zuri

Today is a very, very sad day.

News broke that Cincinnati Zoo vets had to euthanize Baby Zuri due to complications of her broken leg that just wasn’t healing properly, and ultimately, wouldn’t ever heal.

I’m against zoos and the enslavement of animals, but when my coworker offered to take me as her guest for a lunch visit to see Zuri back in May, (actually a few days before she broke her leg), I just couldn’t resist the offer.

The pic above I took is how I saw Zuri for the first time. Hiding in her pen, scared of all us humans outside, anxiously waiting to see her. She was cowered in a corner, like a tiny lil ballerina, her tiny little ears twitching back and forth, trying to comprehend all the human noises she was hearing. It was pretty obvious she was scared to come out. When I peered through the glass, she turned her head in my direction, not raising her head to make eye contact.

I was overcome with a roller coaster of emotions upon seeing her.

The up: I was in awe of her absolute perfection and adorableness. I also experienced a surreal moment & pinched myself that I was actually able to see her with my own eyes.

The down: I was so overcome with an incredible sense of sadness upon seeing her tiny lil feet on the hard concrete of her pen and her overall demeanor. It was obvious she wasn’t happy.

No matter what side of the fence you are about zoos and animal cruelty, I think it’s pretty hard to deny what the animals themselves convey to us humans, about how they feel about being there.

The look in Zuri’s downcast eyes, and her tense demeanor, said it all.

And that’s all the conviction I need about the argument for/against the enslavement of animals.

I’m just grateful that I was able to share a moment with her during her short, adorable life. The image I was able to capture, will always be how I remember her.

Because for me, in the end, the welfare of an animal, always takes precedence. I just want them to not feel any pain, be loved and be happy.

Dave Oehler, Director of Animal Collections at the Cincinnati Zoo, says of the death, “Decisions like that are made based on the animal’s quality of life. The undeniable pain this has caused our staff and community is a testament to the impact Zuri had on us all. She will not be forgotten.”

RIP Zuri.

See you in heaven baby girl.

~ by Maureen on July 1, 2011.

One Response to “RIP Baby Zuri”

  1. Zoos actually play a very important role in Wildlife conservation. Especially the Cincinnati Zoo. I do Random Animal Encounters at the Zoo and I can tell you from personal experience that our animals are not unhappy. They are treated with the best treatment from our amazing keeper staff who definatly put the welfare of the animals before anyone else, including themselves. I had the opportunity of watching Zuri’s birth and watching her play out in the yard, and she couldn’t have looked happier. Afterall, how could she be so unhappy when she had her Mom and Dad right be her side?

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