Animal Defenders International


Animal Defenders International

Kiara gets a CT scan!

Posted: 17 November 2017


A life in the circus takes its toll on the animals – the constant travel, deprived environments with no personal space, lifelong malnutrition, inadequate facilities and a culture of violence. The damage can continue to affect the animals for the remainder of their lives. That means our veterinarians must continue to address the effects of abuse on our monkeys, bears, lions and other animals.

Our rescued lions, saved from circuses in Peru and Colombia and now living under the African sun, have required extensive veterinary care. Specialist dental treatment to mend and remove broken teeth, medication to treat neurological damage from being beaten about the head, vitamin supplements to support their health, vaccinations and more.

In the last two months alone, veterinary treatments have exceeded $6,000 (nearly £5,000) and have included Zeus, one of our Colombian lions, hospitalised for a week with gastric problems and Kiara (pictured) requiring a CT scan (computed tomography scan, also known as a CAT scan) to diagnose the cause of a recurring and frightening problem.


Kiara, of the Leo & Muñeca family, was experiencing a constant discharge from her nose; she was taken to the state of the art clinic, of our veterinarian, Dr Caldwell in Pretoria, for a thorough examination and CT scan. This uses multiple x-ray measurements from different angles, to create an image allowing the veterinarian cross sectional images from inside the body. Nothing but the best to address any problems with our lions.

It was a relief when the scan showed an abscess from a cracked tooth. This required immediate removal of one tooth and root canal on two more by Dr Steenkamp – who has previously worked on so many of our lions repairing the teeth that were smashed by circuses.

Anyone suffering a similar infection or toothache will know how unpleasant this can be….but also the relief once it has been treated! Kiara is feeling so much better now and was back with her family in no time.

As our lions and other animals grow older they will continue to require supplements, medication and veterinary treatment where needed, all funded by ADI. Can you help us provide the veterinary care our lions need? Donate here.


ADI receives no revenue from visitors to the sanctuaries where our many animals live around the world, so your support is vital for their life-saving veterinary treatments, feeding and care, and security needs. Click here to find out about becoming an ADI Rescuer and giving regular support.

Helping to secure more than 40 national bans, our global campaign to Stop Circus Suffering is saving future generations, and thousands of animals, from enduring the terrible abuse our lions suffered in the circus. They are the last generation to suffer but need our ongoing help to live the best possible life we can provide. It is the least that we can do, to make amends for their sad circus lives.

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