My early years are a mystery, but I think I was born in 1976. No one knows who my parents were, or where I was born. I spent many years at the Laboratory for Experimental Medicine and Surgery in Primates (LEMSIP) in New York State. At LEMSIP, I lived all alone in a cage that provided just 25 square feet of floor space, barely enough room to even turn around. My cage was suspended off the ground, causing a permanent foul stench from the excrement below.
When LEMSIP closed in 1995, I was sent to a different lab, known as the Coulston Foundation, even though LEMSIP knew that the USDA had filed formal charges against Coulston for the negligent deaths of chimpanzees and monkeys there. At Coulston, I endured seven more years of being injected with unknown substances and constant blood work. No one bothered to keep careful records of what was done to me, or the tests I endured, except to note that I suffered from chronic diarrhea and cardiac arrhythmia.
I was introduced to Cheetah in the lab and we got along well, but the records don’t say how long we were allowed to stay together. All I remember is that by the time Save the Chimps (STC) rescued me in 2002, I was living alone at the Coulston Foundation in a building known as “The Dungeon.” As soon as STC stepped in, they quickly diagnosed my heart condition and I responded well to medication.
Here at STC, I am known as a very dignified fellow who loves to keep things neat and clean. I really enjoy grooming, whether it’s myself, my blanket, or someone else. I am finally able to enjoy the simple pleasures of life. I love feeling the grass under my feet, and sipping a cool beverage while basking in the Florida sun. I especially enjoy fruit juice or a chilled bottle of water. I also love to paint, and feel that I am very skilled and expressive with a brush! Best of all, I’ve been reunited with my dear friend Cheetah. I don’t think either of us is suited to living in a large group, but we enjoy napping and running around our sunny island home with each other. Being here in Florida with Cheetah reminds me every day how important friends can be.
- Art supplies
- Dried bananas
A must see video of Cheetah and Timmy painting