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UPDATE: OKC baby giraffe dies during risky surgery

UPDATE: The Oklahoma City Zoo giraffe that underwent a life altering procedure did not make it through the surgery.

According to reports, six-month-old Kyah died during the risky surgery to repair the giraffe’s aortic arch.

“The surgery was risky but critical because her mother, Ellie, was trying to wean her and she wouldn’t have thrived without the ability to eat solid foods,” said Dr. Jennifer D’Agostino, Zoo director of veterinary services. “Although there were many risks, the surgery was her only chance to survive.”

OKLAHOAM CITY – Six-month-old Kyah the giraffe will undergo a life altering procedure. A vessel from the the calf’s heart has wrapped around her esophagus, making it difficult for her her to swallow food. As she grows, her esophagus is getting smaller which can be potentially deadly.

There has not been another recorded diagnosis like this in a giraffe according to Doctor Jennifer D’Agostino with the Oklahoma City Zoo.

The surgery will take place at Oklahoma State University by a surgeon who has performed a similar procedure on dogs.

You can follow the progress of Kyah, a baby giraffe at the Oklahoma City Zoo, by visiting the zoo’s Facebook page or Twitter.