Hyderabad’s last cheetah dies of heart attack at city zoo; was gifted by Saudi prince in 2012 | Hyderabad News

HYDERABAD: The last surviving cheetah at the Nehru Zoological Park in Hyderabad, died due to a heart attack in its shelter on Friday evening. The big cat was gifted to the city facility by the Saudi prince, Bandar Bin Saud Bin Mohammed Al Saud, about a decade ago.
According to zoo officials, the incident came to light when workers called out for 15-year-old Abdullah, the male Cheetah, to feed him. When despite repeated calls the cheetah – who usually responded to his name – didn’t turn up, they entered the enclosure and noticed that the usually agile cat was lying dead near a tree.
Later, veterinarians conducted a post-mortem examination on the cat and ascertained that he had died due to a heart attack.
The Saudi prince had gifted a pair of cheetahs, along with a pair of African lions, when he visited the zoo during his trip to Hyderabad in 2012 for the CoP-11 summit.
The Saudi prince named the two cheetahs – Hiba (female) and Abdullah (male). Hiba died back in 2020 after suffering from a prolonged illness of paraplegia – the inability to voluntarily move the lower parts of the body. She was eight-years-old.
With Abdullah’s death, the Nehru Zoological Park has lost its last cheetah.
Cheetahs were declared extinct in India around 70 years ago. Zoo officials note that while the Saudi prince donated a male and female pair with hopes of them breeding, it is very rare for a cheetah to breed in captivity. The only exception so far has been the San Diego Zoo where the Cheetah enclosure spans 2.5 acres. “Cheetahs have a different form of courtship with females. They hunt together and over a course of time the mating happens,” a zoo official said.
In 2022, the Central government reintroduced eight cheetahs imported from Nambia into Madhya Pradesh‘s Kuno National Park in an attempt to revive the fastest cat population in the country.

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