Staff at a Nova Scotia zoo are mourning the loss of a beloved lion.

Obi was diagnosed with kidney failure in 2017 and staff at the Oaklawn Farm Zoo made the difficult decision to euthanize him on Tuesday.

“He reached a point this week from which he was clearly not rebounding and, as we promised we would, we made the heart wrenching decision to end his suffering,” said the zoo in a Facebook post.

“He was euthanized peacefully by our veterinarian, surrounded by our zoo family that loved him. We are heartbroken to have lost such a special soul at such a young age.”

Obi came to the zoo in Aylesford N.S., as a cub in 2013, when he was four weeks old. The zoo says he was one of their most recognized residents and many of his fans followed the journey of his incurable illness after it was announced in November 2017.

“He’s had many ups and downs and had managed to maintain good quality and desire for life for far longer than any of us could have predicted,” said zoo staff.

“We are thankful for every moment.”

Obie would have turned six years old next month.