Baby giraffe dies at Maryland Zoo despite plasma transfusion from Colorado

Baby giraffe dies at Maryland Zoo despite plasma transfusion from Colorado

Baby giraffe dies at Maryland Zoo despite plasma transfusion from Colorado

A baby giraffe at the Maryland zoo, who was struggling to nurse since his was born in June, has died, the zoo announced on Twitter.

Don Hutchinson, the President and CEO of the zoo, said in a statement that the death of Julius has made it hard for them to put their "emotions into words". He was born on June 15 to first-time mother, Kesi, but experienced difficulty nursing, which meant he didn't receive the necessary antibodies against various diseases. Julius also got two transfusions of giraffe plasma from other zoos. After a Herculean effort, exploring every possibility, he was unable to survive. The zoo secured giraffe plasma from sister institutions in Colorado and OH, and performed two transfusions in attempts to boost Julius' immune system.

Julius was receiving a life supporting solution called total parenteral nutrition through an IV thanks to the development and donation of solutions from Mt. Washington Pediatric Hospital.

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On Facebook, the zoo said they created a website to remember the baby giraffe.

Despite 24-hour care and all the treatment efforts, associate veterinarian, Samantha Sander, of the Maryland Zoo, said that the calf remained in a critical condition, which, overnight, too a downward turn overnight.

A postmortem examination of Julius will be performed to try and determine what put him in poor health so early in life, Sander added.

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On Friday, the zoo reported that Julius' condition had deteriorated from the previous evening. "Sometimes there are underlying issues that are not able to be identified or solved by even the best science and skill".

Animal lovers on Twitter, using the hashtag #TeamJulius, have offered love and sympathy to the giraffe as well as zoo workers throughout the month-long ordeal of trying to bring him into stable health. "The Zoo has been overwhelmed by the outpouring of support, concern and prayers for him", officials said on Saturday.

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