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  1. ITV Report

Popular penguin being treated for a suspected heart condition

Yoyo has been given a CT scan. Credit: John Harvey

A popular penguin at Torquay’s coastal zoo is being treated for a suspected heart condition.

Yoyo the macaroni penguin is well known for hanging around the public walkways and greeting guests.

Zoo vet Christa van Wessem says Yoyo was named to reflect his tough start in life.

He was hand reared as it was touch-and-go at first if he would survive. He has been very up and down with his health since.

– Christa van Wessem

In October last year Yoyo became unwell and since then staff have taken blood samples and x-rays to find out what was wrong.

Yoyo - who turns five on Sunday - was also given a CT scan at Abbotskerswell Veterinary Centre.

Yoyo was hand reared because of ongoing health issues. Credit: John Harvey

A computerised tomography (CT or CAT scan) uses x-rays to create detailed computer images of the inside of a body.

Specialists found some possible heart issues, including the suspicion of a slightly enlarged heart.

Yoyo is now on the sort of medication a human would take, helping to reduce the strain on his heart partly by reducing his blood pressure.

His keepers give him his daily dose hidden inside a raw fish.

So far so good, but we’ll have to wait and see. At the moment he is doing really well and is back to his normal – inquisitive – self!

– Christa van Wessem
Yoyo is currently in good health. Credit: Living Coasts