By CBSMiami.com Team

MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Zoo Miami said a painful goodbye to ‘Fluffy,’ a 16-year-old Dromedary camel that had been popular with zoo staff and visitors alike.

Zoo Miami said Fluffy had been suffering from degenerative joint disease for which he was receiving a variety of treatments that included pain management medications and laser therapy. They brought some comfort and a good quality of life for a while. However, the zoo said the progression of the disease had gotten to a point where all available treatment options had been exhausted and his quality of life could no longer be maintained.

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After discussions with the zoo’s Animal Health and Animal Science teams, “the difficult decision was made to humanely euthanize him to prevent any further suffering,” according to a statement from Zoo Miami.

Fluffy was euthanized on Tuesday.

Fluffy during a Camel feeding at Zoo Miami. (Source: Zoo Miami)

Fluffy was part of the Interactive Programs department at the zoo and had frequent interaction with guests who took part in the Camel Feeding program at the zoo’s Critter Connection section of the zoo.

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Zoo Miami said his gentle personality and outgoing nature made him a perfect animal ambassador for staff and visitors alike.

Zoo Miami officials made the very difficult decision to euthanize “Fluffy,” a 16 year old male Dromedary camel. (Source: Zoo Miami)

Fluffy at Zoo Miami (Source: Zoo Miami)

“He will be profoundly missed but hopefully the countless memories that he provided will help to keep him alive in the hearts of many,” Zoo Miami said in a statement.

Originally from North Africa, Arabia and India, the Dromedary camel has a single hump that stores fat and allows the camel to survive for extended periods without food.

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They are especially adapted for life in the desert. They have wide padded feet for walking in the sand and the ability to tightly close their eyes, ears, nostrils, and mouth to protect against sand storms.

CBSMiami.com Team