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A successful procedure for Abu

The Animal Care and Veterinary Teams at Zoo Atlanta are pleased to share that a significant veterinary procedure for 15-year-old giraffe Abu was successful. The teams continue to monitor the geriatric giraffe closely for any signs of complications.

Zoo Atlanta announced on May 17 that Abu, who is the oldest member of the Zoo’s giraffe herd, required an extensive procedure to slow the progression of his arthritis, which the teams had been treating with anti-inflammatory and analgesic medications and laser therapy. In partnership with Zoo Hoofstock Trim Program (ZHTP), an external professional team specializing in the hoof care of giraffes, and an anesthesiology team from the University of Georgia College of Veterinary Medicine, the teams were able to complete the procedure on May 18. Two special therapeutic shoes (not dissimilar from those used in horses) were placed on Abu’s two front hooves to help stabilize the feet. Abu also received stem cell therapy, an innovative tool to help combat the arthritis.

The procedure required general anesthesia, which is risky for older individuals and is especially so for giraffes given their biology. Abu was up and walking shortly after the procedure, and as of May 19, continues to do well.

Visit zooatlanta.org to learn more about Abu and the other two members of his herd, younger males Etana and Isooba.

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