Argentina's Mendoza zoo has come under scrutiny again after a lion died after undergoing surgery. This is the second lion to die there in recent months, and suspicions have been raised numerous times over the living conditions of animals in the zoo.
The cause of death in this case was not neglect, but a risky operation to mend a serious fracture in the animal's broken right paw. The zoo's chief veterinarian Alberto Duarte said that the lion "would have died in its natural habitat because his species would have abandoned him, and he wouldn't have been able to fend for himself."
He added that it would have been easier to put the animal down, but the medical team and zoo director decided to operate to try and save him.
In May, many speculated on the level of living conditions in the zoo in the central Argentine city after another lion died, with a post-mortem autopsy showing a tumor in its spleen, reports Buenos Aires daily Clarin, and this revived the debate about the zoo's polar bear, Arturo. Many, including global superstar Cher, have urged the zoo to free the bear, though experts have said the 29-year-old animal was too old to travel to its natural habitat, the north pole.
File photo of a lion — Photo: elPadawan