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Shorty was born in 2011. He spent a short time with a rehabber before the Arizona Game & Fish Department scooped him up and brought him to the Heritage Park Zoo in Prescott, Arizona. 


Shorty gets his name from - you guessed it - his small stature. Due to an improper diet, he developed metabolic bone disease (MBD) - a condition that causes microscopic holes in the skeletal system, making the bones brittle and soft. Some of the tell-tale signs of MBD is a stout body and short legs, both of which Shorty now sports proudly. 

Fortunately, he received the nutrition and care he needed before he sustained any major injuries to his frail bones. His condition is managed carefully with a healthy diet and regular pain management.

MBD can lead to arthritic conditions in old age. Shorty does have arthritis, and in 2020 he received a hip replacement in one of his rear legs. He is slated for a second hip replacement in the near future to maximize his mobility and comfort in his old age.

Today, Shorty has an enclosure at our Center and has an enclosure all to himself. He used to live with a female in our sanctuary, Sandy, but the two of them never established a working hierarchy of dominance and this caused some stress between the two of them. Sandy now lives across the way from Shorty, also in her own enclosure. Neither Sandy nor Shorty are lonely. They can still interact with coyotes in surrounding enclosures, and they both get to singing with the other coyotes at dusk.

Shorty could be out in the wild today, being a normal coyote, if the people who found her had contacted a professional wildlife rehabilitator immediately. It’s never a good idea to try to raise a wild animal.  

Shorty takes extra care due to his medical condition. Your sponsorship helps to cover these expenses, and contributes to the care for many other coyote residents that call Southwest Wildlife home.

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