“He lived in an area of the lab termed ‘the dungeon,’” Andrew Halloran, director of chimp care for the sanctuary, told The Dodo. “It was downstairs, there were no windows and it was very small. It was not clean at all — just deplorable conditions.”
The New Mexico lab where Cheetah most recently lived, named The Coulston Foundation, went bankrupt in 2002 and left all of its chimpanzee residents with nowhere to go. Save the Chimps began caring for the animals at the facility while it prepared to transfer the nearly 200 apes to its sanctuary.
To make the chimps more comfortable while they waited to be transferred, caretakers gave them fresh fruit, vegetables, blankets and toys to play with. They also gave them some nontoxic paint, brushes and paper.