In Loving Memory
Tiffany arrived at Save the Chimps early in 2018 at the age of 13. Before introducing a new chimp to a family, the incoming resident is housed in our Special Needs area while we monitor the chimp’s overall health. Tiffany’s companion throughout was her lifelong friend Tuffy.
Even though she was new to sanctuary, Tiffany readily expressed her spunky nature. When other chimps were too rowdy during her nap, she would speak her mind, vocalizing to tell them to pipe down. While other chimps carry items around in their pouch (the area between the thigh and the abdomen), Tiff liked to show off by carrying them on her shoulder. The staff gave her a purse, just in case she wanted to carry more. She also loved “water based enrichments” including her kiddie pool.
After an early summer cold virus spread among the chimps at the sanctuary, we noticed some concerning health issues in Tiffany, including a decrease in appetite. As she became increasingly ill, our senior care team came together to assess the reasons behind her condition, performing several procedures, such as an MRI, that hopefully would provide important information.
We remained challenged by Tiffany’s case, so we reached out to experts across the country, as well as internationally, for advice and guidance. A diagnosis remained elusive.
We maintained focus on doing what was best for Tiffany, providing the highest level of care to the extent humanly possible. Sometimes, doing the best we can is not enough to change the course of a chimp’s life. Her condition worsened to the point that further diagnostic procedures would only increase her discomfort and decrease her quality of life. The decision was made to end the suffering of our new friend.
We came through this tremendous loss with a mission to find out more about Tiffany’s condition. A comprehensive clinical assessment is being performed at the University of Florida in Gainesville. We await the final report, but the preliminary results tell us that hers was a complex situation with a myriad of challenges, including underlying liver disease. We always seek ways to ensure the best care for our chimps, and the information from this report will advance those efforts.
- Kiddie Pools