Simba is one of the senior residents at the ADI Wildlife Sanctuary. He’s a bit wobbly on his feet these days and is treated for arthritis in his hind legs but there’s no doubt he still looks magnificent. His arthritis is a result of his early years in a cramped circus cage in Peru before ADI rescued him and his constant companion Rey. Earlier this year we added extra steps to his platform to help him up and down after a hospital visit when his arthritis seemed to be catching up. Simba ignored them, leaping up and down as he’d always done – that’s his choice! An old warrior living with dignity, home in Africa, in Guibord-Sprague Habitat at the ADIWS.
It’s National Senior Health & Fitness Day, and that is very much the theme of daily life at the ADI Wildlife Sanctuary, South Africa. Our oldest residents are Leo and Muñeca, now 19 years old, who endured their first 11 years in small cages in a circus in Peru. Circus life is tough; bare, hard floors, bars, tiny spaces, no room to run, poor nutrition – it takes its toll on their bodies. All our residents receive special health supplements, and Leo’s eye was removed due to problems related to his circus life. Leo also has two meals on feeding days to keep his weight up – whereas other residents have one. He’s hand fed (with tongs), which he seems to enjoy. This ensures he eats all of his food, joint supplements and medication to prevent degeneration of his nervous system. This detailed, boutique-style care ensures these two seniors continue to enjoy their retirement, roaming the 4+ acre Abbey Habitat, back in the land of their forefathers.