Zoo staff hopeful after Penny receives medical treatment for leg re-injury

Posted at 11:43 AM, Jul 09, 2018
and last updated 2018-07-09 13:43:45-04

Penny, the newest member of the giraffe herd at the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo, is recovering from a procedure after re-injuring her leg a week and a half ago.

According to the zoo, Penny recently re-injured her right back leg after she was found splayed in her stall in early June. Penny had shown great signs of improvement after receiving around the clock treatment for many days following the first injury. 

But, after re-injuring her leg, she wasn’t showing much interest in nursing or laying down. Penny was treated for pain and a possible infection with a stem cell therapy trial on July 5.

The zoo said since there wasn’t an official diagnosis on the nature of her leg injury, veterinarians were unsure if the treatment would work. According to an update the following day, zoo staff said Penny had eaten more and gained some needed weight, but was still having trouble laying down.

After four days of not laying down, Penny’s care team decided to do some additional work on her. 

Although her bowel movements and urination were normal, her stability in her legs were causing concerns for zoo staff. Penny was put under general anesthetic on July 8, where veterinarians were able to get a clear X-ray and ultrasounds of her back right leg.

According to the zoo, Penny was recovering from the anesthesia over the weekend but was still a little woozy. The exam didn’t reveal any broken bones or dislocations, which leads zoo staff to believe it could be a deep muscle tear.

This will require intervention and some additional support, but the zoo says it is hopeful she can recover. 

We will make sure to keep you updated on Penny’s condition over the coming days.