- The P-22 Mountain Lion was euthanized Saturday after suffering injuries and illness.
- There was “no hope of a positive outcome” in letting P-22 live, wildlife officials announced.
- P-22 was 12 years old at the time of his death.
The iconic California mountain lion P-22 was “compassionately euthanized” on Saturday, wildlife officials announced, after suffering multiple injuries and illnesses.
P-22, who spent much of his life in Griffith Park in Los Angeles, was captured Monday after suspicions he was “showing signs of distress,” the California Department of Fish and Wildlife announced.
The distress signals included the murder of a leashed Chihuahua in the Hollywood Hills on November 9, CDFW said in a statement. P-22 attempted to kill a second Chihuahua on December 8.
Following P-22’s capture, a series of tests on the puma revealed that it sustained trauma to its head, right eye, and internal organs as a result of a collision with a vehicle. Tests also showed that the puma suffered from multiple ailments, including kidney disease, significant weight loss, arthritis, and a parasitic infection of the skin all over his body.
“P-22’s advanced age, combined with chronic, debilitating, and life-shortening conditions and the clear need for extensive long-term veterinary intervention, left P-22 with no hope of a positive outcome,” the CDFW said in a statement. a statement. “Their poor condition of her indicates that she may also have had additional underlying conditions that have yet to be fully characterized at diagnostics.”
At the time of his death, P-22 was 12 years old, an advanced age for cougars, who typically live to be 13 years old.
California Governor Gavin Newsom reacted to the news on Twitterwriting that P-22 helped “inspire a new era of urban conservation” in the state of California.
“P-22 was an icon,” Newsom wrote in his tweet.
—Gavin Newsom (@GavinNewsom) December 17, 2022
California representative Ted Lieu wrote “Rest in peace” on Twitter, while his colleague, California Rep. Adam Schiff, wrote that he was “heartbroken” by the news of P-22’s death.
“He was our favorite celebrity neighbor, occasional troublemaker, and beloved Los Angeles mascot,” Schiff wrote on Twitter. “But most of all, it was a magnificent and wild creature, reminding us that we are part of a natural world much bigger than ourselves.
Actress Valerie Bertinelli shared a anguish emoji on twitter in response to the news.
—valerie bertinelli (@Wolfiesmom) December 17, 2022
P-22, who has been key to cougar research in the area, was likely born in the Santa Monica Mountains. He was able to cross the 101 and 405 freeways and settle in Griffith Park, now the smallest range ever recorded for an adult mountain lion, according to the National Park Service.
A local celebrity in his own right, the cat was known to wander through Los Angeles neighborhoods and sometimes cause mischief. P-22 made headlines for hiding under a Los Feliz house, was blamed for the death of a koala at the Los Angeles Zoo, and survived after being exposed to rat poison.
In praise for the beloved cat, Beth Pratt, the California executive director of the National Wildlife Federation, wrote that P-22 “never quite became a mountain lion” due to a lack of space for wildlife. that he experienced living in the heart of Los Angeles.
“I hope your future is filled with endless woods with no car or road in sight and where deer abound, and I hope you finally find the mate your island existence denied you all your life,” Pratt wrote.