Saturday, November 29, 2008

New Addition

This morning around midnite, I got a call. My daughter was on her way to the hospital. It appears my grandson decided to come meet grandma a little early this morning. Her water broke and she had to get to the hospital for her C-section ahead of schedule. He is #8 grandchild in the family.

Short and sweet today as grandma is going to have her hands full with the other 7 while mom & dad are welcoming their little brother into our beautiful Mother Earth.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

A Day to Give Thanks

Well. It's here again! My favorite holiday of the year! The day I give thanks for everything in my life. The good, the bad and the ugly. Why? Because it all pulls together to make life a perfect circle.

I am thankful for the LBA. The marvelous wonderful hoomans who rescue both the wild ones and the citizens afraid to have them. Those who remain always in the background, under cover, waiting for the next contact to jump in and save the day. Those wonderful marvelous caring hoomans whom I would be ever so lost without.

I'm thankful for life itself and the opportunity to serve those who need. Einstein once said we do not begin to live until we serve others.

Here at the orphanage we will be having our annual give thanks feast. To be able to provide this meal shows me that there is nothing lacking at the orphanage. Food, shelter, comfort and peace for all who reside here.

Every one please remember to tell others what you are thankful for today. But don't just do that once a year. Every day you are given that you don't wake up and find yourself dead is a gift.

Be safe today. And PLEASE -- don't drink and drive.

Sunday, November 23, 2008


May came and so did a call to come rescue a little fawn. Well. With the price of gas and being laid off I couldn't drive 75 miles one way unfortunately. They got quite upset with me yelling I get paid good money to do this. Didn't matter what I tried to explain, they seemed to think I make a hefty income rescuing these wild ones. Fact is, I pay good money to do it. Call it a hobby if you think I'm nuts for working my butt off for no monetary advancement. I do get paid though. The unconditional love and trust of a wild animal can't be bought with money.

Just so happened another vet tech was in the area and brought me the fawn. The people wouldn't give it up at first. Why I don't know. They had three different stories of where he was found so I could only assume he had been kidnapped while waiting for mother to return from feeding.

He was stabilized and taken to Bay Beach Wildlife Sanctuary where they had just gotten in another fawn his age. On the way down I got my first ever driving ticket. I didn't pull into the left lane when there was a state patrol sitting on the shoulder. $160.00 ticket. Oh well. The fawn was safe.

Please people .... if you see a fawn all by itself laying down and mother is nowhere to be seen? Just leave it there. Stay away from it, fawns become humanized in less than one minute of seeing you. Mother is eating so she can produce milk to feed her fawn. Those that come into rehab? They learn to love humans and that's not good at hunting season. If you see it alone in the same spot and getting weak for several days? Yes. Call a rehabber, call a vet, call the DNR, but don't take it away.

Friday, November 21, 2008

sometime in mid-June

Mid June brought a few difficult cases. The arrival of Eliza and Bethanne was heartbreaking. Such tiny dehydrated little creatures. They had such pleading looks in those little sunken eyes. Their little bodies had lain in the elements for a day too long. It was difficult for them to move and they were covered with parasites. Their siblings had crossed over the night before.

The story I was told on their intake came from an outraged vet tech. She'd heard about some kids killing a mother raccoon, injuring the babies and leaving them lay in the woods. She found where they were and brought them to the orphanage. She got supplies for those girls, came back the next day with syringes and needles. She helped subQ when they arrived. She was a blessing.

Treatment rid them of their parasites. SubQ fluids eased their suffering. They tried to fight the senseless abuse, starvation and dehydration off. But it just wasn't to be. Their hides had become thick and stiff like tanned leather, much like a thick leather belt feels. Imagine trying to move in skin so badly abused having been tanned alive like that. Their eyes were sunken in so it was as if little black holes in space were trying to focus at the world once again. Eliza gave up to cross rainbow bridge and left Bethanne behind for a few days. They were buried next to each other and each given their own purple pansy plant to mark their fleeting existence.

We need to teach kids that it is NOT fun to harm wild animals. It is NOT okay. It is wrong and it is against Mother Nature. Please! Teach your kids and grandkids to be kind. That animals really do have feelings and families too. Good citizens? My heart is broken for the lack of knowledge your children have about our wild animals.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

and then there were three

Well. The president of the Wisconsin Wildlife Rehabber's Association caught wind of my trip to the sanctuary. It was a few days later she called and said they had a litter in and weren't even going to take them out of the kennel they arrived in, were bringing them right up to the orphanage. She said 'want to just work with them a few days and see if they integrate okay?' I said "you know full well you bring them up here you can kiss em goodbye -- they won't be sent back anywhere". She said "good, because I'm already on my way". lol. So. About forty five minutes later the triplets arrived. Gorgeous little 6 week old girls. From a barn in Algoma. Still too little for Lil Dood though. He'd have chewed em up and spit em out. He had anger issues resulting from his ordeal.

By now Lil Dood had adopted Kamir [my guard dog]. Kamir fell madly in love with the Lil Dood, which was odd as she doesn't really want to play with any other critter around here. But her and the Lil Dood were pretty much inseparable. They absolutely adored each other. Kamir doesn't allow anybody else to enter her kennel. But the Lil Dood had full carte blanche from her. She even allowed Lil Dood to eat her dog food when he felt like it.

the season continued:

Shabot and Hiway were quite content to be the only coonies at the orphanage. They didn't move in to the big coondo though. Hiway was okay with it for about three whole minutes but then started pacing like a basket case to get back to her mini-coondo. So I accomodated her.

The Lil Dood was the first intake to arrive. His chariot was the game warden's sports van. He was in a kitten kennel with a plastic bag of powdered lamb formula. He was caked from head to toe with powder. No water. So of course, first thing I did was get that plastic bag out of there and let him out. The game warden jumped back a bit and said "it's going to get away!!" I looked at him on the back of the love seat and said "he's not going anywhere". He asked if I was going to be able to fix the Lil Dood's foot. It was cut in half from being trapped in a pile of wood and hauled into the back of a semi. He'd apparently spent several days in that truck and chewed himself loose. No front teeth left on the little guy. Told the game warden it was going to take me longer to get the formula off him than fix his foot.

Good thing is, it healed beautifully. He has nothing more than a pink spot in the middle of the pad.

After a few weeks, a fawn came in. I decided to take him down to Bay Beach Wildlife Sanctuary as they had other fawns his age. Siblings or peers of same species are very important for wildlife. While at the Sanctuary I looked at their coonies to find a littermate for Lil Dood. Scruffing neonates, looking at em, and I heard 'oooooohhhh's and 'aaaahhhhh's. Turn and look over my shoulder and here's a big picture window of the visitors at the sanctuary watching. I felt like I was picking out a kitten or puppy, but realized I was probably the only one in the state picking out a litter of baby coonies at that moment. This calling has it's perks.

But alas. They were all too small for the Lil Dood. So he remained a single kit that day.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Where to begin?

April was a busy season for the southern states [and as always, Ohio and NYC]. Nary a word about coonies in the Northwoods. No orphans. No injured. No road kill. It was as if they had been swooped out of the Northwoods. Ottowa Canada reported a huge litter -- ten in a single litter. Then the virus hit.

Several humane societies shut down due to this virus killing hundreds of dogs in days. It traveled from the western states to the coasts and down from Canada, eastern and western states simultaneously. Rehabbers began losing the intakes that had been in contact with those faciites. It was all very scary.

It is a matter of pride to be a member in "Coon Central" -- our Yahoo groups pulled together and got supplies to the rehabbers in need on an impressive scale. The LBA took on a life of it's own and many illegal raccoons were relocated to LBA members and all worked out quite well.

Email contacts to the orphanage went through the roof this year. Good thing there were no neonates early in the season because between 12-30 emails for rescues were arriving daily. I became exhausted and didn't even have to feed babies yet!!

This went on until I became concerned there really "weren't" any orphans up here this season. A break would have been awesome, but where were the wild animals other than all those getting this virus in all different states?

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

19 degrees in the Northwoods

I've gotten several emails asking if everything was okay here at the wildlife orphanage.

Truth is, I must apologize!! I didn't know there were so many readers!!

It's been a very busy year here and for all rehabbers. We were hit with an unknown virus hitting the coonie populations from Ontario Canada to Florida and spread in between. Little ones succumbing to the virus within three days of onset. And now flu season is coming .... I wonder how many hoomans know coonies can catch the flu?

Dory & the Orphans Christmas video was featured on Waukesha Sewer Raccoon News a few weeks or months ago or something. This blog follows the lives of the coonies living in the sewers of Waukesha. And the owner David Dix is quite diverse in his posts.

There is much to tell if there are those listening. So I will get these fingers fired up and let you all in on the season's journey and get you up to date at the wildlife orphanage.