The staff of the Gladys Porter Zoo is sad to announce the passing of Noj, one of its treasured adult tigers. Thirteen-year-old Noj was humanely euthanized on July 7, 2021. He had been under intense medical care for 3 years due to thyroid and pancreatic insufficiencies. During that time, he was given a specialized diet, thyroid supplements, pancreatic enzymes, and B vitamins to help him better metabolize his food. “Noj was unique among tigers and will always hold a special place in our hearts. We looked forward to being greeted by his playful chuffs every day. He was truly a joy to work with and was loved very much, and Noj will be dearly missed,” said Mark Echevarria, Associate Curator of Gorillas and Carnivores.
Until recently, despite his rather gaunt appearance, he responded well to his keepers, was possessive over his food, vocalized and enjoyed lazing in the sun and bathing in his exhibit pool. He also interacted normally with his sister, Hobbs, and his unrelated buddy, Neb. These three tigers grew up together at Gladys Porter Zoo. Since his digestive system issue was noted and diagnosed, his caretakers and the veterinary staff at the Zoo watched him very closely and documented any changes in his behavior, attitude and appetite, tweaking his medications and routines to minimize discomfort and ensure the best quality of life.