ST. LOUIS — The Saint Louis Zoo on Friday announced a beloved chimpanzee has died. In a post on Facebook, the Zoo said Mlinzi, a female chimpanzee, had passed away at the age of 29.
The Zoo said she was being treated for cardiac disease since 2014. Over the last two days, her condition got worse and she was in advanced heart failure, a release said.
"Mlinzi has been a wonderful patient, including voluntary participation for ultrasound and electrocardiogram exams to help us monitor her condition and adjust treatments," said Saint Louis Zoo Staff Veterinarian Kari Musgrave, DVM, Dipl ACZM, in the release. "She is a true testament to the wonderful care provided, and the relationship she has had with her team of caretakers."
Because of her condition, and long-term prognosis, the Zoo decided euthanasia was "the kindest and most humane action."
"The animal care staff, the chimpanzee family, and all those who knew and loved Mlinzi are grieving her loss," said Heidi Hellmuth, Saint Louis Zoo Curator of Primates, in the release. "Our dedicated and experienced animal care and veterinary teams gave her the best care until her heart disease could no longer be managed."
Mlinzi had been a resident of the Saint Louis Zoo since she was two years old. She was part of a chimpanzee foster family, according to the release from the Zoo.
"Mlinzi loved to interact with keepers, especially noticing when someone had something new – clothes, jewelry, etc. – that Mlinzi always wanted to inspect," said Lindsey Gray, Jungle of the Apes Keeper, in the release.