Brevard Zoo’s 19-Year-Old Rhinoceros ‘Kibibi’ Gets Treatment for Digestive System Blockage
By Space Coast Daily // July 14, 2019
Brevard Zoo drew blood from Kibibi for testing and provided her with medications for pain
BREVARD COUNTY • MELBOURNE, FLORIDA – Brevard Zoo keepers noticed last week their 19-year-old white rhinoceros, Kibibi, appeared lethargic and uninterested in food and was defecating less than usual. Soon after, a liquid that appeared to be stomach contents began pouring out of Kibibi’s nostrils.
Veterinarian Dr. Trevor Zachariah arrived for a closer look.
Brevard Zoo drew blood from Kibibi for testing and provided her with medications for pain and gut spasms. Kibibi was separated from the other animals overnight so we could keep track of how much she ate and defecated.
Kibibi was sedated to administer fluids and medication and collect urine, and additional blood samples for further testing.
With the assistance of local equine veterinarian Dr. Bradley Newman, whose expertise was critical because horses and rhinos are odd-toed ungulates with comparable digestive systems, the Brevard Zoo veterinary team used a specialized camera called an endoscope to look for a blockage in her digestive system and suspected a mass of food was trapped in her esophagus.
Fortunately, Dr. Newman was able to flush the esophagus with a nasogastric tube. As of this morning, Kibibi’s nasal discharge has abated and she is more energetic than she was earlier in the week.
Brevard Zoo professionals are doing everything they can for Kibibi, but remain guarded about her health. They will continue to provide fluids and medication while keeping a close eye on the rino’s health.
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