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A cheetah, an MRI, and a whole lot of hope

The 10-month old cheetah cub named Corey hasn't had an easy life. The cub has dealt with spinal, brain and possible genetic issues. However, handlers are hoping that and MRI can give them a good idea of what it will take to save his life. (SBG)

ROSEBURG, Ore. - Handlers at the Wildlife Safari are running out of answers to save one of their cheetah cubs, but they hope that a mainly human used machine can help.

The 10-month old cheetah cub named Corey hasn't had an easy life. The cub has dealt with spinal, brain and possible genetic issues. However, handlers are hoping that and MRI can give them a good idea of what it will take to save his life.

"To get to the bottom of a lot of questions we have, we're trying to help this guy," said Sarah Roy, the Carnivore Supervisor at the Wildlife Safari. "We're actually dealing with something that no one has dealt with in cheetahs before."

With about 7,000 cheetahs left in the world, the Wildlife Safari is hopeful that Corey will be able to push through.

"We're hoping that his age and his youth will work in his favor to help us figure out and get him on the right treatment plan," said Roy. "Help him grow out of this, be strong enough to survive it."

Mercy Medical in Roseburg was more than happy to help out. Doctors say that Corey was just like any other patient.

"Some basic concepts," said Dr. Jason Gray, the Chief Medical Officer and Anesthesiologist. "It needs breath, needs a heart rate, needs a blood pressure, keep it comfortable and safe. We just have to adapt to the specific animal or patient."

Through the process, there are hopes that it will give them some of the answers that they're looking for.

"Give them some good information and we'll go about the next step," said Dr. Gray.

As for Roy, she's grateful that the community has stepped up in their time of need.

"Even though that's not their specialty, and it's more human-based, they're happy to come out and try and help the animals at Wildlife Safari," said Roy. "It's so amazing."

The Wildlife Safari has hopes that the MRI will give them the answers they need so that Corey can grow with the community by his side.

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