SAD UPDATE: A 48-year-old Indian rhinoceros that had survived skin cancer has been euthanized at the Los Angeles Zoo and Botanical Gardens. The zoo says Randa was the oldest Indian rhinoceros within zoos worldwide and had drawn attention to the plight of her species
We are extremely sad to announce that our beloved Randa, the oldest Indian rhinoceros in human care, has died due to age-related illnesses. She began showing signs of declining health, including loss of appetite, difficulty moving, and kidney failure, and this morning the difficult decision was made to humanely euthanize her. Randa was born in 1969, and has been a member of the Los Angeles Zoo family since her arrival in 1974.
In 2009, a biopsy revealed that Randa had squamous cell carcinoma, a type of aggressive skin cancer, on her horn. Our veterinary team pioneered a life-saving radiation treatment, partnering with cancer specialists from UCLA Medical Center, to remove the disease from the then-two-ton rhino. In her time at the Los Angeles Zoo, Randa made an impact on generations of visitors, helping to forge a connection with the plight of all imperiled rhinoceros species. The L.A. Zoo chapter of the American Association of Zoo Keepers has even raised over $376,000 to protect endangered rhinos through its annual Bowling for Rhinos fundraiser..
Randa had a great connection with the keepers who worked with her, and she loved swimming and eating honeydew melon and apples. She has been an extremely special animal in the hearts of our staff and volunteers, who are mourning her passing.
Supporters reacted :
Melissa Christina My Angel has flown away….and I can barely breathe right now…
Randa's beautiful keeper, Stephanie, changed my life in 2010 when she allowed me the opportunity to meet and feed Randa. It remains one of the most cherished moments of my life, and Randa became one of the greatest loves of my life.
She taught me so much, she gave me hope and the deepest joy, and I would give anything to have more time with her or at least give her a kiss goodbye. I have visited Randa almost every week since meeting her, I was always in awe of her, and felt so blessed to witness her beauty and power, as well as the extraordinary love and care given to her by her caring keepers, her family.
My heart and soul are just beyond devastated by this news, but I know that no one at the zoo would allow this precious girl to suffer or linger in sickness in any way. Underneath all my tears is tremendous gratitude to the Los Angeles Zoo and all of Randa's keepers over the years (especially Stephanie and Jennifer), who gave her the most magnificent life and so much love.
Return to the stars, Randa, I love you, you will always be a part of my spirit, and I know I will see you again.
Genie Vasels Randel One of the gentlest creatures i have had the priviledge to know. She was the most amazing ambassador for her species and she inspired so many, young and old to care about wildlife. We will miss your beautiful being, Randa.
Sarah Rosen Goodbye sweet girl! My husband & I had the opportunity to feed you 3 years ago…such an amazing creature, so gentle & sweet. We always came to visit you & usually spent a lot of time hanging out. You were very special to us & our next trip will be less without your sweet demeanor. RIP Randa, you will be missed more than words can express.
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