The much-loved Jaguar was rescued by the Sandown based zoo from a garage in Northern Ireland some 17 years ago – her age was unknown when she arrived.
Unfortunately, her health began to deteriorate this Autumn and after veterinary investigation to discover the full scope of her conditions, it became clear that she was not going to recover. The difficult decision was taken to put her to sleep.
A spokesperson for the Isle of Wight Zoo said:
“Losing an animal is always an upsetting time, particularly one as charismatic as well-loved as Chiquita. We would like to thank everyone who has supported us in caring for her throughout the years.
“We were very pleased to be able to offer her a suitable home, and it was a privilege to have so many years with her.”
Zoo Director, Charlotte Corney, added:
“After seventeen years at the zoo, giving more than she ever took, she will be dearly missed.
“There will be a ‘Chiquita-shaped hole at the zoo.”