A few months back we introduced to Ruuxa the cheetah cub and his friend Raina the Rhodesian ridgeback. You can read that story here.
Since then the pair have formed a beautiful friendship becoming inseparable since they first meet at 5 weeks of age. This was shown the other week when Ruuxa came up against some health troubles.
Recently the cub was diagnosed with a growth abnormality which was affecting her forelegs. Ruuxa’s ulna had stopped its growth before the radius did leading to the limbs bowing.
This week she made the trip to the San Diego Zoo Safari Park’s Harter Veterinary Medical centre. A specialist from the Veterinary Specialist Hospital was called in to help with the zoo’s vets with the surgery. Jeff Zuba, the zoo’s senior veterinarian said, “This is a condition occasionally seen in domestic dogs and, if not treated, can cause pain and problems with the animal’s ability to walk later in life.” He said that the surgery went well, “With the help of Dr. Aiken, who is experienced with this procedure, we were able to correct the deformity.”
Ruuxa was accompanied by Raina during her entire surgery. During the procedure she sat nearby and waited. Afterwards she was given access to Ruuxa and became concerned when she could not wake him. The zoo’s animal training manager, Susie Ekard said, “Raina appeared very concerned about Ruuxa when she saw he was sleeping and she couldn’t wake him.” He was very loving continued Ekard, “She licked him and nuzzled him, and when he awoke, she lay with him and seemed very content to know her cheetah was okay.”
It is expected that Ruuxa will be up and active again soon. She will be able to roughhouse with her friend Raina within the near future.
Photo Credit: San Diego Zoo