Veterinary day in pictures

Friday was an intense day with Dr Peter Caldwell and Professor Gerhard Steenkamp doing health and dental check-ups on seven lions: Rey Cusco, David, Tarzan, Tanya, Sasha Lioness, Kimba and Tomas. Rey Cusco and David had dental surgery. Tarzan, Tanya, Sasha Lioness, Kimba and Tomas all moved to new larger habitats. Everyone had recovered from sedation on Saturday and are eating again. If you missed them, you can check out the recordings of the live reports on our Facebook page.

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Smith getting better

We recently posted about Smith’s return to the ADI Wildlife Sanctuary from hospital and his medications, to help with a gastric problem. Rey and Smith were delighted to see each other with much head bumping and rubbing. They settled in their huge habitat with Rey sitting by Smith as he continued to recover. Rey realized something was wrong with his friend and, over the next few days, became very protective of Smith, who had become a bit depressed. Rey would block and try and chase away the team who were giving Smith his meds – they are normally fed and medicated in separate rooms in the house but Smith couldn’t get in. It was very moving to see, but it was essential that Smith’s recovery did not falter, so to make sure Smith gets all his meds, we had to put them in separate parts of their habitat – they can still see each other.

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Smith on the mend

We are delighted to report that the much-loved Smith is regaining his appetite under Dr Peter Caldwell’s watchful eye, at Old Chapel Veterinary Hospital. The huge lion has had x-rays, ultrasounds, and is now on medication and recovering from an intestinal inflammation. He will remain in hospital under observation until Dr Caldwell is satisfied he is ready to come home to the ADI Wildlife Sanctuary and to his brother Rey Cusco. Keep sending your love for his speedy recovery.

Mr Smith has no mane because he was castrated in the circus in Peru, where he was rescued by ADI in 2014. He is 11 years old and weighs a whopping – second only to our largest resident, Mr Kesari (

Smith in hospital, Iron improving

Dr Peter Caldwell visited the ADI Wildlife Sanctuary after concerns about 11 year old Smith who had stopped eating and 17 year old Iron who was limping, eating less, and had stopped roaring. Iron has responded well to a change in his arthritis medication, is regaining his appetite, walking much better and he is roaring like his old self. Iron’s teeth were examined and he will be in our next round of dental work. We remain concerned about the lovely Smith as it is very unusual for him not to eat and he appears nauseous. He is under observation at Old Chapel Veterinary Hospital and scheduled for x-rays, an ultrasound and further blood tests. Send him your love, we all hope that he will be well and back with brother Rey Cusco soon.

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Friday’s patients doing fine

The lions and tigers who received veterinary treatment from Dr Peter Caldwell on Friday are all well and back enjoying life in their habitats. These pics were taken today.

Rey Ayacucho and brother Simba both had dental surgery from Professor Gerhard Steenkamp including extractions of damaged teeth and are receiving daily pain relief to prevent any discomfort. Both have had previous dental surgery on their broken teeth, smashed by circus workers. Rey Cusco was sedated for an examination of his front legs which are arthritic due to damage to the structure of his feet caused by cutting off the end of his toes to stop his claws growing, causing pain up his legs in each of the joints. Blood was taken to examine his inflammatory markers and his pain medication is being adapted. All three lions received vitamin injections. Tigers Max and Stripes were given vaccinations with drop out darts.

We hope everyone enjoyed our day of Facebook live broadcasts capturing a day of veterinary care at the ADI Wildlife Sanctuary.

Easy and David reunited

Easy is back with companion David after her visit to the veterinary hospital. She is being treated for an ear infection and also had an examination by the ophthalmologist. Lions are very sociable cats and they were clearly pleased to be reunited. The pair rescued from different circuses in Colombia and Peru were brought together at the ADI Wildlife Sanctuary earlier this year for companionship.

Lupe needs your love

Ex-circus tiger from Guatemala, Lupe, is now suffering the same damage because of her circus life, like her sisters Bimbi and Sombra. She is now having the same seizures we saw in her sisters and was taken to hospital for an MRI so that Dr Caldwell and his colleagues could establish the extent of the lesions on her brain and decide the next course of medication to hold off and minimise the seizures. This condition cannot be cured, but we can treat her to make her comfortable and give her as long as we can to enjoy the freedom of her habitat alongside her family. She is now back home at the ADI Wildlife Sanctuary following her scan.

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Iron recovered after dental surgery

Good to see Iron looking back to his usual magnificent self after over three hours of dental surgery at the ADI Wildlife Sanctuary at the weekend. Dr Peter Caldwell was at the sanctuary on Saturday assessing the animals and giving vaccinations. Dr Gerhard Steenkamp performed three root canals, two extractions, repaired a fractured molar in Iron who was originally rescued from a circus in Colombia.

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