Zara, a lioness with a nose bleed

Animal Treated


Animal Condition

Nasal tumour

Specialist(s) Required

Internal Medicine
Zoo Animal Specialist

Zara, lioness with a nose bleed

Zara, a 13-year old lioness developed a left sided nose bleed

Before visiting the Specialist.

Zara’s keepers had noticed she had an intermittent nose bleed over the previous 4 weeks. She was otherwise in good condition and appetite was good. A nasal foreign body or fungal infection was suspected.

Zara’s Care

A specialist in zoological medicine anaesthetised Zara and a rhinoscopy was performed (a small camera inserted into the nostrils) by a medicine specialist. No obvious abnormalities were identified but biopsies were obtained from a slightly irregular region at the back of the nose.

Zara’s Diagnosis
Sadly biopsies confirmed the presence of a malignant nasal tumour as the cause of the nose bleeds. Radiotherapy was a possible treatment option, but the logistics of such treatment was considered too difficult. Although the prognosis for this majestic creature is poor, symptomatic treatment was started and Zara remains comfortable.


Article provided by Yvonne McGrotty RCVS and European Specialist in Small Animal Internal Medicine