After an extended stay in hospital following a seizure, Sombra is back at the ADI Wildlife Sanctuary and got a wonderful greeting from sister Lupe. Sombra was released from her travel crate into one of the rooms in her house while Lupe waited eagerly in the adjoining room. They went straight to the metal grill door between the rooms, nuzzling each other and chuffing loudly. We then let them back in together and they have not left each other’s side since, curling up together under the platform.
Due to lifelong malnutrition in the circus in Guatemala, these two tigers did not get the vitamins their bodies needed as cubs, the whole family grew up with a congenital deformity which is the root cause of these seizures. In daughters Jade and Luna, it shows as an unnatural, goose-step action in their front legs. So far, Sun, Moon, Max, Stripes and Itza do not appear to have the problem. Initial hopes that it may have been solved with medication and special supplements were dashed when after many months, Sombra had this seizure. Veterinarian Dr Peter Caldwell has the tigers on a new regime which requires both to be medicated twice a day – that is why the rooms in the houses sponsored by our wonderful supporters, are so important. The good news is that an MRI shows Sombra does not have the level of brain damage from the seizures, seen in her poor sister Bimbi. We are therefore very optimistic.
Huge thanks to the anonymous donor who has covered our veterinary costs for this year; it means we can deal with these health problems in our circus survivors quickly, as we provide a place of loving kindness where they can enjoy life to the full.