Los Angeles, CA – The famous P-22 mountain lion of Hollywood was euthanized on Saturday after being hit by a car. The beloved big cat was humanely put down after a veterinary team determined that he was suffering from “severe injuries,” in addition to chronic health problems.
In a release, the California Department of Fish and Wildlife explained the multitude of health problems the 12-year-old cat was suffering from:
The results of these tests and screenings showed significant trauma to the mountain lion’s head, right eye and internal organs, confirming the suspicion of recent injury, such as a vehicle strike. The trauma to his internal organs would require invasive surgical repair.
The examination also revealed significant pre-existing illnesses, including irreversible kidney disease, chronic weight loss, extensive parasitic skin infection over his entire body and localized arthritis, all of which have led to the unfortunate deterioration in P-22’s overall condition.
P-22 was tranquilized and captured last Monday after signs of “possible distress” were observed. The difficult decision to euthanize the mountain lion was unanimously agreed upon by his entire veterinary team.
On Saturday, California Governor Gavin Newsom issued a statement:
“P-22’s survival on an island of wilderness in the heart of Los Angeles captivated people around the world and revitalized efforts to protect our diverse native species and ecosystems.”
A portion of the eulogy, written by Beth Pratt, of the National Wildlife Federation, reads:
Although I wished so desperately he could be returned to the wild, or live out his days in a sanctuary, the decision to euthanize our beloved P-22 is the right one. With these health issues, there could be no peaceful retirement, only some managed care existence where we prolonged his suffering—not for his benefit, but for ours.
He changed us. He changed the way we look at LA. And his influencer status extended around the world, as he inspired millions of people to see wildlife as their neighbors. He made us more human, made us connect more to that wild place in ourselves. We are part of nature and he reminded us of that. Even in the city that gave us Carmeggedon, where we thought wildness had been banished a long time ago, P-22 reminded us it’s still here.
His legacy to us, and to his kind will never fade.
Rest easy P-22.