Ojiclaro, one of the lions rescued in Colombia, is sedated by Dr. Peter Caldwell and prepared for surgery to repair extensive damage done to his teeth during his time in the circus. Behind him, his friend Iron looks on. Ojiclaro and Iron appeared in one of the saddest circus pictures we have seen (inset), in which the two lions looked broken. Today, they are transformed – it’s incredible to think they left that horrific circus cage and are back home in an ADI enclosure at Emoya Big Cat Sanctuary in South Africa.
Circus lions endure horrific damage to their teeth in circuses as they are hit in the face or smash teeth against bars. As infection sets in, these magnificent animals can endure years of silent pain and suffering in their circus cages. Infection can even be fatal.
Here, veterinary dentist, Dr Gerhard Steenkamp, performs root canal work on Ojiclaro.
These surgeries are a vital part of the ongoing care of the animals saved as ADI closed down Peru’s circus industry.
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