first-ever successful CT scan on a live rhino in South Africa.
Image: FB / Care for Wild

Oz, the very first live, adult rhino in South Africa to have a CT scan (after presenting with an unusual swelling to his face) is “doing very well”, according to Care for Wild Rhino Sanctuary.

The sanctuary said many people had been asking after hearing the exciting news of the ground-breaking scan on Tuesday. The scan was a milestone moment for veterinary healthcare, diagnostic imaging and rhino conservation. “The logistical experience, information and knowledge gained from this is phenomenal progress in the fight to save a keystone species from extinction,” said Care for Wild.

first-ever successful CT scan on a live rhino in South Africa.
Image: FB

The scan was undertaken last week by the Care for Wild Rhino Sanctuary and the University of Pretoria’s Faculty of Veterinary Science in Onderstepoort. It revealed that the white rhino had a tooth root abscess (and we all know how painful that can be!), and the appropriate treatment was given.

first-ever successful CT scan on a live rhino in South Africa.
Image: FB

Care for Wild said this weekend that Oz is now back in their care and has been “reunited with his crash of rhino friends”. Fortunately, the rhino monitors report that he is eating and drinking well!


Oz was tragically orphaned by poachers (hunting for rhino horn) in 2015; and subsequently rescued and taken to Care for Wild for rehabilitation, release and ongoing protection.

Care for Wild said that earlier this year, Rhino Monitors had reported the unusual swelling to his face. Care for Wild Founder and CEO, Petronel Nieuwoudt, consulted with veterinarian, Dr Albertus Coetzee of West Acres Animal Hospital.

“After discussions with wildlife veterinarian Dr Jacques O’Dell and Prof Gerhard Steenkamp, veterinary dentistry specialist and maxillofacial surgeon at the Faculty of Veterinary Science, and with the support of Louis van Wyk of Wildlifevets.com the decision was made to transport the one tonne bull to the Onderstepoort Veterinary Academic Hospital (OVAH) for further investigation,” Care for Wild explained last week.

Petronel said: “We cannot save a species alone but together we can achieve remarkable things. In acknowledgement of the team of specialists who came together, we thank them for their passion, dedication and immense commitment.”

first-ever successful CT scan on a live rhino in South Africa.
Thanks to an incredible team of people in South Africa working together, this milestone was achieved. Image: FB/ Care for Wild

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