DOB: October, 2010
Weight: 35 lbs.
Our newest Zoo Sanctuary baby found her way to us after being confiscated by officers from the CA Department of Fish and Game. While the details are limited, we do know that she was being illegally kept by someone in the Santa Cruz mountains.
We took her in at about 6 weeks old. She was very weak, but seemed to be in relatively good health. She was suffering from dehydration; had diarrhea and giarrdia and possibly ringworm. She was taken to Hazel Ridge for a physical and initial vaccines. She had her FIV/FeLV test and both were negative. She had blood drawn while with Fish and Game and they also ran a few more tests. The goal would be to have her living at the zoo ASAP, but we will need to add smaller gauge wire to one of the cougar holding pens. Like our other Zoo baby Henry, she will be introduced to her new home and our other cougars in the weeks and months ahead.
Updates from Zoo Keeper Jill and Amy
Apr 5 -Cedar is now about 7 months old and weighs about 35 lbs. In the wild, she would still be with mom and traveling with her to kill sites to eat but, mostly to play and practice “killing” their meal. It is at these sites, kittens learn how to open up a kill and what parts to eat first. Cougars use their teeth and rough tongue (called “papillae”) to pluck fur and tear open the carcass, where they ingest the nutritious internal organs before moving on to meat and muscle.
Here at the zoo, we try to provide our carnivores with natural prey items as much as possible. We feed a variety of rodents, quail and even deer. While most of the fare is purchased, we also feed out deer that have been hit by vehicles. The deer we accept is always fresh and then we freeze it for a month to ensure we eliminate any parasites before we feed it out. This type of whole carcass feeding is extremely beneficial to our captive carnivores. Not only does it meet their needs nutritionally, it satisfies many of their physical and mental requirements.
Cedar loves to play with her food before she eats it, sometimes she plays so much she gets tired and has to nap before finishing it! This is all natural and part of her growing up.