Nina had undergone surgery two weeks ago to remove a mass that developed near her ear. Pathology results came back as a fast-growing cancer. Once the mass was removed, there was hope that she was on the road to recovery for the time being, museum officials said on Facebook.
She received attentive care from keepers and veterinarians as well as medicine to hopefully prevent any further growth and pain. Unfortunately, she did not respond to any medical care and she died Monday, the museum said.
“It is easy to get attached to our zoo animals. They can appear to be cute and cuddly like Bomani (trust me, he is not cuddly) or just hands down adorable like Nina. But, they require constant care and even then sometimes have shorter lives than we expected. This has been the case with our amazing Prehensile Tailed Porcupine, Nina. We will miss her and her little nose-boop paintings. She was friendly and kind and helped increase awareness and empathy for many of her wild cousins. These animals are not pets but you do get attached. We will miss Nina,” the museum said on Facebook.