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A giraffe calf at the Seneca Park Zoo was euthanized due to issues related to a joint abnormality

Giraffe with splint
Seneca Park Zoo
The Seneca Park Zoo has announced that a giraffe calf born on July 12, 2022 had to be euthanized this week due to a joint abnormality and related issues

The Seneca Park Zoo has announced that veterinary staff have euthanized a male giraffe calf born on July 12.

Officials said the calf was born with a congenital abnormality, and had not shown signs of improvement despite constant therapy and care.

The calf was showing additional signs of degradation. He was increasingly lethargic, nursing less, and showing signs of stress, which indicate decline in the quality of life,” said Dr. Chris McKinney, “While some fetlock issues can heal, the calf’s limb abnormality was especially pronounced.”

McKinney noted that giraffes bear most of their weight on their front limbs, making it very difficult for them to recover from the joint abnormalities. The day of his birth, the calf was placed in a splint to assist with walking until the leg was stronger. Zoo officials said that he showed no signs of improvement, and his overall condition was in decline as he grew rapidly.

Our animal health and animal care staff are heartbroken,” said Seneca Park Zoo Director Steve Lacy. “Our staff worked around-the-clock doing everything we possibly could to ensure viability. The level of care the calf received was nothing short of exemplary.”

Zoo officials said that the calf named Olmsted or Olmy, born in April , continues to thrive. The Zoo’s Animals of the Savanna building may remain closed at least through this weekend so that animal care teams can monitor stress levels in the giraffe herd.