Metro Richmond Zoo mourns loss of 20-year-old lion

Metro Richmond Zoo mourns loss of 20-year-old lion

CHESTERFIELD, VA (WWBT) - The Metro Richmond Zoo says a 20-year-old lion has died.

Pawl, who would have been 21 on Oct. 11, "was a favorite among zoo staff and visitors," the zoo wrote on Facebook. "He truly was the king of the zoo as his majestic roar could be heard from all corners of the park. He quickly became one of the famous faces of the zoo."

Pawl lived nearly twice as long as most lions do in the wild.

"Often male lions don't live past 10 years because they lose support from the pride when they are out of their prime years," the zoo said.

The zoo said Pawl suffered from arthritis and had been on medication.

"Over the last couple weeks, he was having a very difficult time getting up and down and going on exhibit," the zoo said. "We increased his meds doses, but it did not help much."

The zoo said Pawl had stopped eating and doing his "favorite normal behaviors."

The zoo said he was "humanely euthanized" on Sept. 27.

"Pawl is survived by Basa and Xonga, our two white lions," the zoo said.

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