CLEVELAND — The Cleveland Metroparks Zoo announced on Monday that one of their oldest residents had to be euthanized.
According to officials with the Zoo’s Marketing and Public Relations Department, African elephant ‘Jo’, a 45-year-old female, was euthanized by the Zoo’s veterinary care staff this morning.
Jo was in medical distress in her night quarters when her keepers arrived early Monday morning, according to a press release from the zoo.
“After carefully reviewing Jo’s status, the Zoo’s veterinary and animal care team made the very difficult but humane decision to euthanize her,” said Zoo Director Steve Taylor. “We provided Jo with a great quality of life and we’re very proud of that.”
For the past several months, Jo was under medical observation and treatment for edema, which according to the Mayo Clinic, causes excess fluid to become trapped in the tissue of mammals.
The Elephant Care & Visitor Center in African Elephant Crossing will be closed for the rest of the day but is expected to open Tuesday at 10 a.m.
Jo has been at the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo since 1997 after arriving from the Wildlife Safari in Winston, Oregon.
Jo was the oldest elephant at the Zoo and shared the African Elephant Crossing with four female elephants – Moshi, Martika, Shenga and Kallie, and one male elephant – Willy.