Injured three week old Giraffe needs our help!

We were contacted by Dr. Ryan to assist with this 3 week old Giraffe that is knuckling over on his right front fetlock joint.
This is a condition we see in young foals as well, when either the extensor tendon ruptures, or some of the collateral ligaments of the joint get injured.
Dr. Ryan expertly immobilised the young Giraffe and we proceeded to take radiographs of the joint – fortunately showing no bone damage.
We agreed to cast the lower limb, as we often do in foals, to stabilise the joint and give the body time to produce scar tissue which should tighten the joint. All done under the watchful eye of the mother. The calf was woken up and within minutes joined up with the cow and started suckling while we and the other members of the tower looked on.

Giraffe Dr johan with giraffe

Why are Giraffes important?

Giraffes are keystone species, meaning they play a critical role in shaping their habitats and altering ecosystems. They consume browse which other animals cannot reach, opening up areas for themselves and smaller species, whilst also promoting the growth of forage. They also play a crucial role in spreading seedlings with some Acai tree seedlings only germinating after they have passed through a Giraffes digestive system.

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