Friday, November 4, 2016

Make sure you call the professionals - not the internet

 Each year wild animals are kidnapped from their natural environment. This is a nation wide epidemic.  You can stop the spread of this heart jerk reaction.
   You look out your window into your yard or perhaps you are out on a nice stroll. You see a young animal on the ground and your heart leaps!  First thought is ’look a wild animal’ . To many the next thought is ‘the animal must be orphaned’ and the well meaning individual picks the animal up.
   Your next thought should be: AHWF. Make sure you are AWARE of your surroundings, HESITATE before approaching a wild animal, WATCH for signs of distress before picking up, FOLLOW through with contacting the professionals if indeed there is a need to remove this animal from their natural home.

   Wildlife rehabilitation is challenging at best and exceptionally frustrating when patients come in to care days or weeks after they have been ‘rescued’.       
   The saddest part of rehabilitation is when an animal must be euthanized. The state of Idaho requires all native wild animals be released or euthanized. The wild animal must not be kept in confinement—it is not fair to the wild animal.  
   When an animal has been wounded and full recovery is not possible the decision is easier. The animal is suffering so an end to the pain is the most humane decision.  
   When an animal had every chance to be returned to the wild but must be put to sleep because of ignorance on the part of the well meaning rescuer it is very painful.
   A wise man once said ‘you are forever responsible for what you choose to tame’. When you choose to keep that wild animal and attempt to provide long term rehabilitative care you are not helping the animal. You are not thinking about the animal. You are doing a disservice to that helpless wild creature.

Wildlife rehabilitation facilities are run by dedicated people with years of training & experience. They did not just read an article on the internet.  Without proper nutrition and housing the animal will not meet the full potential and will not be able to be successful if released back into the wild.
   Survival of the fittest is not just a slogan or nonchalant saying in the rugged Idaho wild lands.

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