After Giraffe's Tumble, an 'Incredibly Difficult Decision'

Ferrell, 15, euthanized after dislocating jaw, which couldn't be repaired, per Dallas Zoo
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 2, 2024 2:29 PM CST
Dallas Zoo Euthanizes Giraffe Injured in a Fall
Ferrell the giraffe.   (Dallas Zoo, via X)

A 15-year-old male giraffe was euthanized at the Dallas Zoo on Sunday after suffering an accident that hindered his ability to eat. The zoo said the giraffe, Ferrell, had an "unexpected fall in the barn" late on Friday. While examining Ferrell, veterinarians found he had dislocated his jaw "in such a way that surgery could not repair it." Some 13 years ago, the giraffe had suffered an injury to his jaw that meant he was unable to hold his tongue in his mouth, per the Dallas Morning News. The fall did further damage to his tongue, making it "nearly impossible for him to eat," the zoo said.

"The nature of this injury meant that Ferrell would face limitations in the use of his jaw and tongue, likely requiring a partial or full amputation of his tongue in the future," the zoo said in a social media post, per Fox News. It said its team "made the incredibly difficult decision to humanely euthanize" the giraffe on Sunday. "This sudden loss has left us all completely heartbroken," according to the post. Ferrell "will be dearly missed by all who knew him." Five other giraffes have died at the zoo in the last decade, including a calf who was euthanized after suffering a leg injury in 2021, per NBC Dallas-Fort Worth. (More giraffes stories.)

Get the news faster.
Tap to install our app.
Install the Newser News app
in two easy steps:
1. Tap in your navigation bar.
2. Tap to Add to Home Screen.