Oldest animal living at zoo is euthanized

The Woodland Park Zoo has euthanized the oldest animal living at the zoo.

47-year-old Gertie the hippo has lived at the zoo since 1966. She was not only the oldest animal living at the zoo, it’s believed that she lived at the zoo longer than any other animal in the zoo’s 110 year history.

The decision to euthanize Gertie came after her health had been declining over the past year because of her age. Within the last week, the 5,000 pound hippo’s condition worsened and her ability to move became more challenging and her discomfort was more apparent. “We could no longer medically manage her pain and we had to follow her cue that the quality of her life was becoming seriously compromised,” said Dr. Darin Collins, the zoo’s director of Animal Health. “Therefore, we had to make the difficult, but humane, decision to euthanize her.” The life expectancy of a hippo in the wild is 45 years.

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6 thoughts to “Oldest animal living at zoo is euthanized”

  1. So long Gertie :<
    They've known she was getting frail for a while so this isn't a surprise but I'm still sad. I remember a behind the scenes tour a few years back where we got to throw veggies to the hippos & I swear her teeth were as long as my forearm!

  2. Does anyone know if they will get another hippo? Don't they only have two now? Well one now that Gertie is gone. Won't the other hippo be lonely?

  3. I saw Gertie back in '67 when I was a cjild, thewr was an elephant in the pen with her, Getie went to go get some food that the elephant wanted, while Gertie was eatting, the elephnt gave Gertie a swat on her hindside :-)

    Gertie jumped with a start, and trotted across the pen :-) the audience laughed

    Ahh the memeories….
    These two were located right near the pony rides..

    Memories like the corners of our mindd, mistoy colored meories of the way we were….

    Rest in Peace Gertie, I won;t forget the smile you gave me as a child

  4. Kat,

    They have two remaining hippos now. A few years back, knowing that Gertie was getting on in years, they introduced a young hippo so that Lupe wouldn't be left alone.

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