HOLLYWOOD HILLS—Mountain lion P-22, commonly known as the Hollywood Cat, was euthanized on Saturday, December 17, due to the lion’s declining health officials stated.
A medical evaluation was done December 12, and doctors discovered that there was significant trauma to the mountain lion’s head, right eye and internal organs, confirming the suspicion of recent injury, such as a vehicle strike. Along with the injuries they found 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 deterioration in P-22’s overall condition. The animal was expected to be around 12 years old.
Veterinarians determined that due to the lion’s age and the chronic conditions he was facing there was a need for extensive long-term veterinary intervention. They did not see a positive outcome if they were to keep him alive.
Both the medical team at San Diego Zoo Safari Park, and CDFW officials collaborated in the decision to euthanize P-22. “The most difficult, but compassionate choice was to respectfully minimize his suffering and stress by humanely ending his journey,” a statement read.
For years, P-22 was known to linger around the Hollywood sign which is how he obtained his nickname.
Many expressed their love and sadness for P-22’s passing including some government officials.
Congressman Adam Schiff, who represents part of Los Angeles County, said he was “heartbroken” at P-22’s passing.
“He was our favorite celebrity neighbor, occasional troublemaker, and beloved L.A. mascot,” Schiff tweeted. “But most of all he was a magnificent, wild creature, who reminded us that we are part of a natural world much bigger than ourselves.”
California Governor Gavin Newsom praised P-22’s “incredible journey.”
“P-22’s survival on an island of wilderness in the heart of Los Angeles captivated people around the world,” said Newsom.
P-22’s renown was due to frequent sightings, video doorbell cameras and physical encounters. A Facebook page in honor of the cougar has more than 20,000 followers.