SACRAMENTO (CBS13) – Thursday was a sad day for the Sacramento Zoo. The matriarch of the zoo’s chimpanzee troop, Josie, was put down because of ongoing health issues.
She was estimated to be 48 years old and was being treated for a variety of age-related illnesses. Josie wasn’t getting any better and continued to suffer so zoo administrators and veterinary staff made the decision to euthanize her Thursday morning, the zoo said.
“On one hand you have an amazing chimpanzee that has been a very special part of the zoo for 26 years. On the other hand you see a friend who has been suffering and you have done everything feasible to make her better,” Zoo Director Mary Healy said.
Josie was fond of young children and often raised her hand to the glass to greet them when they came to the zoo to visit her. She kept an eye on them while they toured the chimpanzee area. She also loved to paint.
“She was an integral part of the dynamic chimp group, and a stabilizing personality among the chimps. Josie will be greatly missed by zoo staff, the other chimps and visitors alike and will always hold a special place in our hearts,” the zoo said in announcing her passing.