The leopard was nearly 17 years old.
The Denver Zoo has announced that its beloved Amur Leopard, Hari-Kari, was humanely euthanized in mid-August. Hari-Kari was nearly 17 years old, and had outlived the typical lifespan of his species, which is 10 to 15 years.
"At nearly 17 years old, he exceeded the typical 10-15 years this species is expected to live, and stayed with us in geriatric care for several years. Unfortunately, in his old age, his health took a turn for the worse and our animal and veterinary staff made the difficult decision to humanely euthanize him," wrote the zoo on its Facebook page.
Hari-Kari has been with the zoo for 15 years and was loved by both visitors and keepers alike.
"For the past 15 years, Hari-Kari has lived with us at Denver Zoo, and was described as perfect in every way by his keepers," the zoo said.
Amur leopards live in the wild in Asia and Russia and are the most critically endangered of all the leopard species, as they are often poached for their beautiful coats. These wondorous animals can run up to 37 miles per hour, and has been reported to leap more than 19 feet horizontally and up to 10 feet vertically.
Luckily, Hari-Kari sired two adult sons that are doing their part to keep the species alive. Their offspring have found their way to several zoos across the nation and helping with conservation efforts.
The Denver Zoo is open to the public on a timed reservation system, and it needs your help. According to the zoo, it costs $100,000 per day to provide care, including the special geriatric care Hari-Kari received, and enrichment to its 3,000 animals. Because of COVID-19 closures, the zoo is losing around $1 million every month.
You can help by visiting the zoo, buying a membership, or making a donation on the zoo website.
Did you interact with Hari-Kari at the zoo? Have you visited the zoo since it reopened? Let us know in the comments.