When it’s time to go, the animals just know.
At 59, Mama was the oldest chimpanzee and the matriarch of the chimpanzee colony of the Royal Burgers Zoo in Arnhem, the Netherlands. When she got sick, she instinctively knew her time had come and she refused to eat and drink. It was heartbreaking to see seeing the elderly chimp in that condition so her caretakers decided to try one last thing… they called Jan van Hooff, an old friend of Mama’s who had known her since 1972. They thought he’d be able to convince her to keep fighting.
It took a while for her to recognize him, but when she did her reaction brought tears to my eyes.
Sadly, Mama passed soon after this video was recorded. She didn’t have the strength to continue her struggle but at least she didn’t go without saying goodbye to her friend. RIP Mama