Cincinnati Zoo's 16-year-old gorilla dies of heart failure

Cincinnati Zoo's 16-year-old gorilla dies of heart failure
Source: Cincinnati Zoo

CINCINNATI, OH (FOX19) - The Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden are mourning the unexpected loss of a 16-year-old gorilla.

Anju died on Wednesday from heart failure, according to a Facebook post from the zoo. Anju was a mother to Elle, a baby gorilla born at the zoo two years ago.

Anju started showing symptoms in November and an ultrasound revealed she had a congenital, terminal heart condition.

"The animal care staff did everything they could to treat her symptoms and keep her comfortable. Gorillas and humans share 98 percent of the same DNA and are similar in many ways. One commonality is that the number one cause of mortality is the same for both, heart disease," the zoo wrote on Facebook.

Young females, such as 16-year-old Anju, are not in the high-risk category and her congenital abnormality was odd for a gorilla and totally unexpected, zoo officials said.

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