She suffered from a liver torsion causing internal bleeding then ultimately, cardiac arrest
Zoo Miami has announced 7-year-old “Swift” the red fox has passed away. She was a “cherished animal ambassador,” according to a release.1
Swift was experiencing atypical lethargy and a loss of appetite, so she was brought to the animal hospital for further examination. An ultrasound revealed a liver torsion where a portion of the liver had twisted around important blood vessels that caused internal bleeding.1 Emergency surgery was then performed to try and eliminate the torsion and stop the bleeding. However, while under anesthesia, Swift unfortunately went into cardiac arrest and despite their efforts, the animal team was unable to resuscitate her.
In April 2017, Swift was transferred to Zoo Miami by the Florida Wildlife Conservation Commission after being rescued by the South Florida Wildlife Center in Fort Lauderdale. She was considered non-releasable, and the zoo provided her a forever home. Zoo Miami noted she had a “calm and warm personality” and served as a zoo ambassador who engaged in educational presentations created to help connect people with nature and wildlife. “The team that was responsible for her daily care is heartbroken,” Zoo Miami expressed in the release.1
Red foxes are found throughout the continental US, from Alaska to Florida.2 They live in open areas in wetlands, rural and suburban neighborhoods, woodlands, and brushy fields. They feed on small mammals, birds, eggs, amphibians and some fruits and vegetables.1 Because they live in similar areas and share certain characteristics, red foxes are often confused with grey foxes. However, the most distinct features of the red fox are its larger size, longer snout, and fluffy, white-tipped tail.1,2