By Ueslei Marcelino
Once upon a time, there was Fafá.
A brave lioness, wild by nature, strong and imposing, Fafá was born and raised in the Brasilia Zoo, and she was undoubtedly one of its biggest attractions.
The star’s last show, however, was a most unusual scene, inside a CAT scanner. Fafá, nearly 18 years old, had stopped eating, had bleeding nostrils, and suffered seizures, and everyone who cared for her at the zoo became concerned.
A complex plan was orchestrated by the zoo to take the lioness to a veterinary clinic. After a heavy dose of sedatives, she was moved from her cage to a litter and transported to the clinic.
When veterinarian John Ricardo Nardotto announced the discovery of tumors in the lioness’ liver, the discouragement of the medical team became obvious. The tumors meant a high risk of death, for Fafá had cancer of the uterus in 2010 and everything led to believe that these tumors could be a metastasis of that.