PORTLAND – One of the Oregon Zoo’s new African lion cubs was reunited with her family Tuesday after she was taken from the den and put into special “supportive care” because she appeared to be sick.
Zoo veterinarians said the cub stopped nursing last week and also kept going off by itself.
“The little one’s definitely not out of the woods yet,” said zoo veterinarian Tim Storms in a press release. “But medically speaking, the outlook is much better than it was a week ago. Her blood-glucose levels are normal and she’s able to maintain a good body temperature. She’s vigorous and responsive. She’s still underweight, but she’s up to about 4.2 pounds now, which is a significant improvement.”
Veterinarians initially found that the cub's body temperature was not stabilizing at a normal level. That’s when they decided to put her in a heated cage where she was kept under close watch and fed formula.
“Neka (the cub's mom) seemed to pick up right where she’d left off,” said curator Jennifer Davis, who oversees the zoo’s Africa and primate areas. “She just started grooming the smaller cub right along with her other two, almost as if she’d never been away.”
The three cubs were born September 7. It was the first pregnancy for their mother, Neka, and zoo veterinarians said she has been an amazing new mom.
Background: 3 lion cubs born at Ore. Zoo
Raw video: Lion cubs with Neka in den