LOUISVILLE ZOO kariba the lion obit 2-1-19 - courtesy zoo.jpg

Courtesy Louisville Zoo 

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- The Louisville Zoo's female lion has died.

In a release, the zoo says 22-year-old Kariba died on Wednesday. The big cat had been on what the zoo called "quality-of-life watch" because of her advanced age and declining health. She was no longer responding to therapy, so the decision was made to euthanize her.

"These decisions are never easy and are made after discussions between the veterinary staff and animal care staff," said Zoo Veterinarian Dr. Zoli Gyimesi in the release. "Kariba was geriatric and staff began to see a decline in her health in 2018. Examinations under anesthesia resulted in providing her with palliative care and close monitoring of her welfare."

Lions in the wild live from 10 to 15 years and about 17 in captivity. Kariba had lived at the zoo since 2000, when she moved from the Wildlife Way Station in California.

The zoo now has one lion, a 3-year-old male named Siyanda.

LOUISVILLE ZOO kariba the lion obit 2-1-19  2 - courtesy zoo.jpg

Courtesy Louisville Zoo 

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