Injured animal highlights need to local woman for rehabilitation services

Christina Abbott ended up having the baby skunk put down due to the lack a nearby facility

After an injured animal had to be put down, Christina Abbott is calling for more wildlife rehab services in Grand Forks.

With no nearby locations to take the animal for rehab, Abbott and a local veterinarian made the decision to the end the animal’s suffering.

Late on Aug. 3, Abbott received a call from a friend that they had a wounded animal on their property, which turned out to be a baby skunk that had suffered a head injury.

“I drive over there at 11 o’clock at night, it’s dark out, it’s up against a mountain way off the beaten path,” said Abbot. “It’s on the side of their driveway, and I spent a half-hour monitoring and watching.”

Abbott, whose father had been a conservation officer based in Nelson, had followed her father’s footsteps and worked with wildlife centres on the Lower Mainland before returning to the area two years ago. After observing the animal, seeing no blood, no visible injury, she began her series of calls to see if there was anywhere or anyone she could take the animal to. She found herself with no options.

“I just found out I don’t have the connections that I thought I had,” Abbott said.

After staying up all night, Abbott finally took the skunk to her local veterinarian, where the two of them agreed after analyzing the skunk that it was best put down. One of the factors in that decision was the lack of a nearby facility that could take in and care for the skunk for the length of its recovery.

“I would have to transport her to CritterCare in Vancouver, and that’s a seven-hour drive,” said Abbott. “I know that rehabbing skunks when they’re babies is okay as long as there’s no injuries, but if there’s something broken, it’s a long haul.”

It was an experience that Abbott never wants to repeat, and one that she hopes no other person or animal should have to go through.

One alternative to a larger facility like CritterCare would be a transition house, which Abbott is trying to put together. Animals would be stabilized, and then when they’re able, transported by volunteers to a facility capable of handling their long-term recovery.

It isn’t the first time since she came back to the region that she’s thought about establishing some more local services, but this latest experience has highlighted for her some of the obstacles in her way. The largest need she sees at the moment; local support.

“If I’m the one who has to think about getting some funding,” said Abbott. “I’m going to need a reason, and I’m going to need people behind me that are gonna start jumping and yelling for me to open.”

This was her fifth animal she’s tried to rescue since moving back, two of which currently live with her, because there was nowhere else for them to go.

“Every one of them has been absolutely gut-wrenching, because I’m completely helpless.”

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.


Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Education ministry’s COVID plan could do more for SD51, says teachers’ union president

There have been no confirmed COVID cases two weeks into school year

Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of Sept. 27 to Oct. 3

World Farm Animals Day, Drink Beer Day and Virus Appreciation Day are all coming up this week

To build or not to build: Grand Forks community centre to go to city, district referendum

Plans to build a community centre have been in the works since 2018

Russell selected as B.C. NDP candidate for Boundary-Similkameen

The director for the Regional District of Kootenay Boundary was chosen over Oliver councillor Grice.

Education ministry’s COVID plan could do more for SD51, says teachers’ union president

There have been no confirmed COVID cases two weeks into school year

Weekend sees 267 cases, 3 deaths in B.C.; Dr. Henry says events leading to COVID spread

There are currently 1,302 active cases in B.C., while 3,372 people are under public health monitoring

Lightning strike: Tampa Bay blanks Dallas 2-0 to win Stanley Cup

Hedman wins Conn Smythe Trophy as playoff MVP

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Liberals seek to fast track new COVID-19 aid bill after CERB expires

Government secured NDP support for legislation by hiking amount of benefits by $100 to $500 per week

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

B.C. VOTES 2020: Echoes of HST in B.C. debate over sales tax

Cannabis, tobacco, luxury cars still taxed in B.C. Liberal plan

She warned her son about toxic drugs, then he was dead

Donna Bridgman’s son died at the age of 38 in Vancouver

B.C. food and beverage producers set record sales in 2019

Farmed salmon again leads international exports

Most Read