GARDEN CITY, Kan. (KSNW) – Lee Richardson Zoo is mourning the passing of a popular resident. Payton, a 15-year-old mountain lion, was euthanized by veterinary care staff Wednesday due to his declining quality of life.
“Payton had been dealing with chronic arthritis for a number of years and while veterinary and animal care staff were able to help him continue to enjoy his final years with medication, we had reached a point where we could no longer effectively treat his pain,” said General Curator Jordan Piha.
The median life expectancy for mountain lions is 13.6 years.
Payton was a wild-born mountain lion brought into captivity as a cub after he walked up to a small group of hunters. Two female mountain lions, Bailey and Mika, both three years old, currently reside at the zoo.