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Thread: So I called...

  1. #1
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    Default So I called...

    I'm devastated. I phoned the wildlife center to ask for an update on the condition of the 3 pinkies I had brought in the day before and they told me they had to be euthanized due to being underweight/failure to thrive. They said it was likely due to an internal parasite or the food I was giving them. On their scale they clocked at 15-17 grams. The facility says at their age they should be 30 grams. I'm confused as I thought that was a 2-week milestone. I estimated their age at around 3-4 days old when I first found them as they were completely pink throughout, umbilical stump present, and some of their digits were still sealed together. They were on 0.8 cc of Esbilac every 2 hours. Poops were mustard yellow and rather firm. They were all very active and squirmy in the two days they were with me. My question is... What age would you pin them to be based on the picture below and would you consider them to be underweight? I also do not think it was fair that they were euthanized without giving them a fighting chance. I even suspect they were euthanized the very same day I brought them in as they are short staffed due to COVID.

    My head is spinning and my heart is full of guilt. I feel like I failed them.

    This is a picture of them on their last day with me.

    Name:  7D971E58-A9B0-4A49-B4B4-1C4896F487F1.jpg
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  2. #2
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    Default Re: So I called...

    That is a tough situation. I can't really second guess from afar but I will say that many wildlife center are on skeletal staffing levels and it is extremely hard for them to provide the same level of care and to the same numbers that they could normally serve. The triage decisions made might reflect the fact that they simply can't provide care for all wildlife brought in. I am no squirrel pinkie expert, but they don't look at all bad off to me. Lets just say that you learn over time, which local centers to bring pinkie squirrels too and which ones to avoid since they seem to have a unusually high ratio of euthanzation vs raise/release. Sometimes, I think the smaller centers and home based rehabbers can spend more time with an animal than the really large wildlife rehab centers but I can't say that is always the case.

    You did what you thought was in their best interests so don't blame yourself. But I would consider alternative placement sites in the future. I'm sorry your little ones were not given the chance to rally and thrive.
    See my wild squirrel adventures in the thread "Squirtle's yard!":
    https://thesquirrelboard.com/forums/...quirtle-s-Yard!

    Loving dad to Sir Max, 2017-2018. There is no foot so small that it cannot leave an imprint on this world.

    "Once in a while you get shown the light, In the strangest of places if you look at it right."
    -Grateful Dead

  3. 3 TSBers pass along the fuzzy thanks to TubeDriver:

    Chirps (03-01-2021), jenny777 (03-01-2021), Squirreleesi (03-01-2021)

  4. #3
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    Default Re: So I called...

    Quote Originally Posted by TubeDriver View Post
    That is a tough situation. I can't really second guess from afar but I will say that many wildlife center are on skeletal staffing levels and it is extremely hard for them to provide the same level of care and to the same numbers that they could normally serve. The triage decisions made might reflect the fact that they simply can't provide care for all wildlife brought in. I am no squirrel pinkie expert, but they don't look at all bad off to me. Lets just say that you learn over time, which local centers to bring pinkie squirrels too and which ones to avoid since they seem to have a unusually high ratio of euthanzation vs raise/release. Sometimes, I think the smaller centers and home based rehabbers can spend more time with an animal than the really large wildlife rehab centers but I can't say that is always the case.

    You did what you thought was in their best interests so don't blame yourself. But I would consider alternative placement sites in the future. I'm sorry your little ones were not given the chance to rally and thrive.
    Thank you for your kind words and I agree. I did find several squirrel rehabbers, though they're all about a 5-hr drive from me. Which I wouldn't mind if it meant ensuring future babies receive the full extent of a care plan.

    I hope my little ones knew warmth and love in their last moments.

  5. #4
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    Default Re: So I called...

    Oh my! What sad news! The pinkies did not look in dire straights to me, either. I have learned that my local rehab center is the very LAST place Iíd ever advise anyone to take any animal to. Not only do they rehab raptors (which I despise) I wouldnít be sure they wouldnít feed a young squirrel, rat etc. to the raptors in the name of teaching them how to hunt.

    In the future, please reach out to folks on this board before placing any squirrels. We donít have members in every area, but we try to find suitable placement for babies so something like this doesnít happen. Iím sorry this happened. . Itís very unfair they werenít given the chance to live.

  6. 3 TSBers pass along the fuzzy thanks to Mel1959:

    Buddy (03-01-2021), Chirps (03-01-2021), jenny777 (03-01-2021)

  7. #5
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    Default Re: So I called...

    Quote Originally Posted by Mel1959 View Post
    Oh my! What sad news! The pinkies did not look in dire straights to me, either. I have learned that my local rehab center is the very LAST place Iíd ever advise anyone to take any animal to. Not only do they rehab raptors (which I despise) I wouldnít be sure they wouldnít feed a young squirrel, rat etc. to the raptors in the name of teaching them how to hunt.

    In the future, please reach out to folks on this board before placing any squirrels. We donít have members in every area, but we try to find suitable placement for babies so something like this doesnít happen. Iím sorry this happened. . Itís very unfair they werenít given the chance to live.
    I agree. This is critical information and believe me I am so angry. I should have listened to my gut feeling.

  8. 2 TSBers pass along the fuzzy thanks to jenny777:

    Buddy (03-01-2021), Mel1959 (03-01-2021)

  9. #6
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    Default Re: So I called...

    RIP Babies

    Animals are magical....Thank you everyone who tries to help them, save them tirelessly...

  10. #7
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    Default Re: So I called...

    Those babies are not the age where they should be 30 grams, unless maybe these are Western Grays which I have no experience. I know our Georgia Grey squirrels are smaller than than their northern cousins, but I'd say they look good weight wise and 15-17 grams is what I would expect of pinkies in my care at their stage of development. I have a fair amount of experience with Grey pinkies.

    You did not fail them, the wildlife center that took them in failed in every way... JMO. I'd encourage you to send a PM to a TSB Admin with the name of this place so we can minimally "yellow card" the facility for pinky squirrels.

    RIP Babies, run whole and free...

  11. 3 TSBers pass along the fuzzy thanks to Spanky:

    Chirps (03-01-2021), jenny777 (03-01-2021), RockyPops (03-01-2021)

  12. #8
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    Default Re: So I called...

    Quote Originally Posted by Spanky View Post
    Those babies are not the age where they should be 30 grams, unless maybe these are Western Grays which I have no experience. I know our Georgia Grey squirrels are smaller than than their northern cousins, but I'd say they look good weight wise and 15-17 grams is what I would expect of pinkies in my care at their stage of development. I have a fair amount of experience with Grey pinkies.

    You did not fail them, the wildlife center that took them in failed in every way... JMO. I'd encourage you to send a PM to a TSB Admin with the name of this place so we can minimally "yellow card" the facility for pinky squirrels.

    RIP Babies, run whole and free...
    I will send you a PM.

    It hurts!!! Thank you to everyone who has responded. They deserved so much more. They were safer in my care than theirs.

  13. 5 TSBers pass along the fuzzy thanks to jenny777:

    Chirps (03-01-2021), Mel1959 (03-01-2021), RockyPops (03-01-2021), Spanky (03-02-2021), sundoesshine (03-02-2021)

  14. #9
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    Default Re: So I called...

    I'm so sorry for you. Betrayal is the worst, and that's what they did. Betrayed your trust that they would care for your babies as you did.
    "I hope everyone got or gets their Baby Love today"~Shewhosweptforest

    https://www.henryspets.com/1-baby-squirrel-care-guide/

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