HENDERSON, Ky. (WEHT) – Mesker Park Zoo and Botanic Garden announced the passing of its male Bactrian camel, Franklin.

A spokesperson for the zoo posted, “Franklin just celebrated his 21st birthday at Mesker Park Zoo & Botanic Garden. Franklin lived a long, happy life at Mesker. He was born in 2002 at Zoo New England and came to Mesker in 2006. Here, he touched the lives of his keepers and visitors that have met Franklin over the years. He was a spunky man who loved spending the days laying around in the dirt and making funny faces at people who interacted with him.”

Zoo officials say for many years, Franklin had been dealing with the onset and progression of age-related arthritis. Officials say Franklin recieved “excellent care” including “ground breaking therapy.” The zoo notes its efforts gave the zoo an extra four years with him, and in the end the decision was made to humanely euthanize Franklin once his quality of life was being impacted and all treatment options had been exhausted.

Zoo officials posted, “Please keep his keepers and care team in your thoughts.”