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Old 11-20-2019, 02:43 AM
 
Location: Eugene, Oregon
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mtl1 View Post
I saw something unusual on a trail at a nature park this evening. Walking the trail I saw up ahead three people crouched around what I first thought was probably a cat. When I got there it was a wild raccoon who appeared to be sick but not aggressive and wouldn't run from people. It just sat on its hind legs at the side of the trail, with its head kind of bowed and shivering, looking weak and appearing as if it wanted help. They had called the ranger and we assumed the raccoon was ill, and I went on my way. I just never seen a wild animal behave like that. It's kind of sad to see any living creature sick, suffering and probably dying.

Distemper and specifically, canine distemper, has been mentioned previously and from the symptoms, I think that's what this animal had. Canine distemper affects raccoons badly. About every 25 years, we have an epidemic among the raccoon population in our region and most, if not all of them die. It usually takes a couple of years before populations outside the epidemic area start edging into the territory and gradually build their numbers up.

Last edited by Steve McDonald; 11-20-2019 at 02:52 AM..
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Old 11-20-2019, 05:54 AM
 
Location: Here
1,530 posts, read 380,379 times
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Originally Posted by KCZ View Post
It was probably rabid. I hope no one handled it.
Handling non-rabid raccoons isn't a good idea, either.
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Old 11-20-2019, 07:05 AM
 
7,515 posts, read 4,154,686 times
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Originally Posted by Deserterer View Post
Yes, it is preferable to let a wild animal in a wild area succumb to disease unless there is a larger problem. Its naive to think that removing one sick wild animal is going to prevent a major disease spread. Its not.




Yes, of course, when it becomes a problem then it is a problem. Until then its just a normal natural occurrence of the wild that isn't a problem.






Not sure what that means, and not sure how we came to be talking about epidemics. We are talking about a single animal, that we don't even know for sure has a contagious disease.
Why do you continue to change the question?

My suggestion was that it would be cruel and dangerous to allow an animal with a serious contagious disease to be permitted to continue to mix with the rest of the wildlife population. That is "the larger problem." In the absence of a sure diagnosis it is preferable to err on the side of caution before epidemic conditions manifest themselves.
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Old 11-20-2019, 08:33 AM
 
1,640 posts, read 902,756 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kokonutty View Post
Why do you continue to change the question?

My suggestion was that it would be cruel and dangerous to allow an animal with a serious contagious disease to be permitted to continue to mix with the rest of the wildlife population. That is "the larger problem." In the absence of a sure diagnosis it is preferable to err on the side of caution before epidemic conditions manifest themselves.

You don't seem to understand or have any appreciation for the meaning of "wild". Its not an urban park, animal farm or a petting zoo. Disease is a normal and natural part of wild ecological processes.
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Old 11-20-2019, 02:26 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Deserterer View Post
You don't seem to understand or have any appreciation for the meaning of "wild". Its not an urban park, animal farm or a petting zoo. Disease is a normal and natural part of wild ecological processes.
You seem to not understand that the boundary between "wild" and "not wild" is not an impenetrable wall. There is constant movement between the wild and civilization. It behooves us to do everything in our power to take steps to avoid the spread of diseases everywhere.

It appears that you would have no problem with squirrels, for example, being at he center of a plague pandemic as long as they kept to the forests and out of our cities. They cannot be so isolated.
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Old 11-20-2019, 04:02 PM
 
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Originally Posted by kokonutty View Post
You seem to not understand that the boundary between "wild" and "not wild" is not an impenetrable wall. There is constant movement between the wild and civilization. It behooves us to do everything in our power to take steps to avoid the spread of diseases everywhere.

In that case we should have teams of veterinarians parachuting into the wilderness to hold free wildlife vaccination clinics. There have in fact been areas where aerial drops of rabies vaccines have been made in urban and rural residential areas where it is a real problem. But not to treat a single animal.


Quote:
It appears that you would have no problem with squirrels, for example, being at he center of a plague pandemic as long as they kept to the forests and out of our cities. They cannot be so isolated.

And killing a carrier squirrel in a wild area in your plague pandemic would have essentially zero measurable effect.



There's an appropriate time and place to treat animal disease, and its not everywhere and every time an animal is sick. Its not effective, and its not necessary.
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Old 11-20-2019, 04:36 PM
 
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The park is a metro park but in a rural setting and there are homes here and there within a mile or so away. I do wonder what the rangers did with the raccoon. I don't think they carry firearms, although they can call the county sheriff or who ever. I wonder if they trapped or destroyed it to prevent potential spread of illness and to put it down from misery or let it go to most likely die and suffer on its own. I'm guessing the former since while it's considered a nature, green and wild area it is also a controlled area, not sure.

Which reminds me pets and dogs are not permitted in the area I was in. I assumed to keep dog poo off the trail, but it's probably for reasons related to the sick raccoon and protecting wildlife.
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Old 11-21-2019, 02:29 AM
 
7,515 posts, read 4,154,686 times
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Originally Posted by Deserterer View Post
In that case we should have teams of veterinarians parachuting into the wilderness to hold free wildlife vaccination clinics. There have in fact been areas where aerial drops of rabies vaccines have been made in urban and rural residential areas where it is a real problem. But not to treat a single animal.





And killing a carrier squirrel in a wild area in your plague pandemic would have essentially zero measurable effect.



There's an appropriate time and place to treat animal disease, and its not everywhere and every time an animal is sick. Its not effective, and its not necessary.
Great idea - ignore the early signs of a problem and wait until there is a true epidemic to deal with.
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Old 11-21-2019, 09:34 PM
 
1,640 posts, read 902,756 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kokonutty View Post
Great idea - ignore the early signs of a problem and wait until there is a true epidemic to deal with.

One sick animal in a wild area is not "early signs of a problem".



In this particular case, a metro park with homes in the area, its not exactly my idea of a wild area and removing the animal, if a professional decides it is likely suffering from an infectious illness, might be the prudent thing to do.
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Old Yesterday, 03:39 AM
 
7,515 posts, read 4,154,686 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Deserterer View Post
One sick animal in a wild area is not "early signs of a problem".



In this particular case, a metro park with homes in the area, its not exactly my idea of a wild area and removing the animal, if a professional decides it is likely suffering from an infectious illness, might be the prudent thing to do.
How many do you need to see before deciding public health officials should be notified? Such professionals are the ones who compile information to determine if the incident is related to any others which may require action. If twenty people see twenty different animals with the same problem but all follow your thinking how will a problem ever be identified? Your just encouraging the critter to go back where it came from does not help those charged with investigating such things.

If you see something, say something.
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