Suni the Elephant Recovering Wellon April 19, 2012
Since her move to Lilayi Elephant Nursery, Suni, the young baby elephant has settled well.
She shares a stable and yard with Zambezi, a six month old orphan from the Lower Zambezi, who is also convalescing as he recovers from foot sores. The two young elephants are seen to be friendly at times, and can also be very boisterous taking it in turns to shove one another, especially near feeding time! Just being with other elephants Suni seems to have relaxed and as we have seen with other orphans, the social and emotional recovery plays an important part of the physical healing process.
The severe wounds inflicted to her have started to heal as the swellings are subsiding thanks to the continual efforts of Dr Harvey Kamboyi, the ZAWA vet. The horrific axe wound to her spine is now looking more pink inside the wound. Suni still does not use her back right leg. When she stands she rests it lightly on the ground, but when moving around she drags the leg around behind her. It is pitiful to watch her do this and we are constantly in disbelief that someone could inflict such injury to a vulnerable and tiny baby!
However, Suni does not give us the impression that she is suffering. She continues to eat well, now consuming 20L milk every day! And she is always calling for her milk as dinner time approaches. Despite dragging her back leg she is moving with ease and does not make sounds indicating pain. We are sure she is feeling some discomfort but over the past week she has begun to sleep more soundly and restfully laying down in a more relaxed position than before. With the daily physiotherapy Suni is undergoing, we hope that she will continue to improveand will start to use the leg again as the wound heals along her spine.
For now she is eating and sleeping well and we are all hopeful she is on the road to recovery!