There is much to celebrate this fall with ambassador African Elephant, Genny C turning 46 years old. She is currently in the Top 5 for being one of the oldest female African Elephants in conservation care. This is quite the accomplishment as female African Elephants have a median life expectancy of 38.5 years old. Being a local resident of the Seneca Park Zoo since 1979, it can be assumed that her extraordinary care throughout the years has contributed to her aging gracefully.
Being a geriatric animal does however come with some old age ailments. Genny C is treated by veterinary staff regularly to support the arthritis in her front legs. She has actively participated in many forms of supportive care such as acupuncture, laser therapy, and medical grade CO2 therapy. All of these therapies are designed to help reduce inflammation of the joints and increase blood flow to the sites to promote healing. Genny loves to participate in these activities as it gives her time to be spoiled by her keepers, and just stand and eat!
Also, as we all know, as we age it is so important to keep moving! We work daily on behaviors with each of the elephants to ensure that they can and will voluntarily participate in their own health care. This helps us keep them in the best shape possible both mentally and physically all while being proactive about any old age ailments that may arise. As part of this, we pay close attention to their mobility. During training sessions, Genny can be asked to perform leg lifts, stretches and balance behaviors. Genny C also loves to pick up and pull logs around her exhibit to give her some strength exercise as well!
Genny C, Lilac & Moki would love for you to join us at the zoo on November 1st at 11:00 to help celebrate Genny. The support and love that the community has for this special elephant is apparent every day as visitors come by and tell stories about how they were around when she was named or how she was the little elephant they saw as a child. She has grown up with this community and is a true testament that you are only as old as you feel!