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Our older fox, Cas, is entering his golden years and we love him so much that we want to give him everything he needs to live as many good days as he has left. He's still happy and hopping and we're still by his side every step of the way!

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Welcome to Animal Wonders!

I'm Jessi, and I'm here with our Arctic fox, Cas. Arctic foxes are absolutely incredible in the wild because they have extreme adaptations for an extreme environment.

But because of that challenge, they have pretty short lives of about three years in the wild. Cas is eight and a half years old, and he's starting to show his old age. [CHEERY INTRO MUSIC]. Some of the things that Cas is dealing with in his old age is that he's just overall slower.

He also can't jump as high, and he doesn't shed as easily. Which means that he's sometimes white in the summer, and it leads to a whole lot of brushing sessions. Another old age related struggle is that Cas was actually diagnosed with cancer.

He got a tumor on his back right leg, and even after removing the tumor, it grew back. The best option from there was to actually remove his entire leg. It's been a few months now, and Cas is getting stronger everyday and really learning how to get around on three legs.

As Cas gets older, we're also seeing more signs of arthritis. Just like humans and our dog companions, foxes that live long enough will end up with joint pain. So we're giving him glucosamine and pain meds to help him feel comfortable, just like.

I'm doing for myself. The biggest challenge he has right now is that the arthritis in his back is blocking the nerves that alert him to the need to pee. It might sound silly, but if you can't feel that you have to pee, you'll just hold your pee until your bladder gets too full to hold it all.

To make sure he's not filling up, I've been helping him empty his bladder so he can continue to feel his best and enjoy his day like he would normally do. It's actually kind of an easy process and he's quite cooperative. He goes into his pee corner, and I put enough pressure on his bladder that he engages his muscles and he's able to relieve himself.

Now, this might sound excessive to some people, but when you care for animals who can't talk and tell you how they're feeling, the best way to know how an animal is feeling is to observe their behavior to determine their quality of life. When I talk about quality of life, I mean asking the question, “Is this animal living a good life?” With Cas and his medical needs, we're having regular vet visits to assess his health and happiness, and this is what we see: he's very excited about food, he gets around well on his three legs, and he has good interaction with Seraphina, his red fox companion. And something wonderful has come out of all of this.

For his entire life, Cas didn't like any kind of interaction where I would touch him. When I was first helping Cas relieve himself, he wasn't a fan of being touched, but at the end of every session, I would give him a good rub down on his neck and ears, like you would pet a dog. And after a couple weeks of having to help him pee, he actually started going to his pee corner on his own and when I'd give him his neck rubs, he actually leaned his head and ear into me to get more pets.

I never thought Cas would enjoy tactile interaction, but here we are. And I'm finally able to show him affection in this way and it makes him feel good. That is what caring for animals is all about: making them feel good and allowing them to live a happy and healthy life, in whatever capacity that is, for however long they're with us.

It's been an absolute pleasure being able to share Cas with classrooms of students and thousands of people who have met him over the years, and with hundreds of thousands who have seen him in our videos. Cas, you're a very good boy and I'm glad we can continue to give you a good life even into your golden years. If you'd like to show Cas your love, head on over to our Amazon Wish list and send him one of his favorite toys or treats.

Link is below. Thanks for joining us and getting an update on Cas! If you like animals and you'd like to continue going on animal adventures with us, be sure to subscribe and we'll see you next week!

And thank you for watching Animal Wonders, which is produced by Complexly, a pretty awesome production company. If you want to keep imagining the world complexly with all of us, check out Crash Course Artificial Intelligence hosted by Jabril Ashe. Over 20 episodes, he'll unpack the logic behind AI systems, and he'll even write and implement code in labs to program his very own AI.

Check out the first video about the history of AI and the revolution that's happening today! The link is in the description.