The Oakland Zoo may have to change its name to Oakland Mountain Lion Rescue Center.
Coming from the same general vicinity as Holly, the cub found abandoned last month in Santa Cruz and brought to the zoo’s veterinary hospital, another cub that arrived at the zoo this past Sunday appears to be on the mend.
“She still has her IV in, but that could come out soon,” the zoo tweeted Wednesday in regards to Hazel, a 4- to 5-month old cub that was found severely emaciated in Soquel, near Santa Cruz. “She’s not in the clear yet but eating on her own is a big step in the right direction.”
Hazel weighed only 12 pounds when she was found by a local resident, who called Native Animal Rescue animal shelter. They contacted the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW), who determined Hazel’s mother was nowhere to be found. CDFW brought Hazel to Oakland on Sunday night.
According to Isabella Linares, the marketing manager for Oakland Zoo manager Conservation Society of California, Hazel is suffering from severe anemia and hypoglycemia.
“We gave her much-needed fluids and set her up with a warm and cozy overnight bed,” Linares said, in a statement. “By [Monday] morning, vitals had slightly improved, and we are doing everything we can to help her heal.”
Linares said mountain lions can have kittens year-round, and according to CDFW, it is unfortunately common to find cubs needing help during winter months.
Holly, who was named for the holidays, was about the same age when brought to the zoo Dec. 19.
She was considered critically ill when brought in, prompting hospital staff to treat her with fluids, vitamins, anti-nausea medication, and anti-parasitic medication. Zoo officials say she has made remarkable progress since.
Zoo officials have said Holly won’t be released back into the wild and they will find her a permanent home in the coming weeks at an Association of Zoos and Aquariums-accredited zoo or sanctuary. She is just too young to survive on her own in the wild, which could also be the case with Hazel.