RIP Satu: Houston Zoo's 18-year-old tiger euthanized

(Houston Zoo)

HOUSTON – The Houston Zoo's 18-year-old Malayan tiger died last night.

Satu lived a long life, one that lasted longer than her median life expectancy, which in the wild would have been eight to 12 years, the zoo said.

The carnivore staff and veterinary team made the decision to euthanize Satu on Monday night. The staff members said her quality of life began to decline.


“When caring for aging animals, we first do everything in our power to make sure they have a great quality of life,” said Lisa Marie Avendano, vice president of animal operations at the Houston Zoo. “We manage their diet and exercise, as well as their medication if necessary. It is never an easy decision to euthanize an animal, but it is one we make with the animal’s well-being as the top priority. With world-class animal keepers, five incredible veterinarians, and a complete veterinary clinic, our animals receive the best care possible, and that includes end-of-life decisions.”

As she aged, Satu developed arthritis in some of her joints. 

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