Amazonas, beloved aunt of the Cusco pride, is on her way to hospital. There was no need for sedation and she calmly walked into her travel crate. For some time, veterinarian Dr Peter Caldwell has been monitoring her right eye, which has a cataract and the lens has prolapsed to the anterior chamber. For much of the time, the eye has looked normal with occasional flare-ups. It is highly likely the eye will need to be removed. Eye problems begin in the rescued lions as a result of years of malnutrition in the circus. There may also be a genetic component, as the lions with the worst eye problems are likely related. Amazonas’s sister Kiara of Cusco had an eye removed five years ago and Leo had his eye removed last year. Although they are in two separate family groups, the circus owners bred and sold cubs to others and asserted that Leo was father to most of Peru’s circus lions. Kiara of Huarral is definitely Leo’s daughter (as is Africa), and now has a serious cataract in one eye.
Kiara of Huarral was recently examined by Dr Caldwell, who determined she still had some sight in that eye and we should hold off surgery. All of our rescued lions at the ADI Wildlife Sanctuary who have needed surgery and been left with one eye, have coped very well.
There will always be health challenges with our circus survivors, and many of the lions we rescued during Operation Spirit of Freedom in Peru in 2014, are getting older at the same time. Some are now classed as geriatric. Supporters will, however, be pleased to know that Rey Ayacucho continues to respond well to treatment.
PLEASE SEND YOUR LOVE AND GET WELL WISHES to Amazonas Cusco and Rey Ayacucho.