Time's running out for Gilbert: Injured Okanagan fawn has few hours until euthanized - InfoNews

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Time's running out for Gilbert: Injured Okanagan fawn has few hours until euthanized

Gilbert the fawn will be euthanized today if a sanctuary is not found.
Image Credit: FACEBOOK/ Kangaroo Creek Farm
July 19, 2019 - 1:40 PM

KELOWNA - There are just a few more hours until the fate of Gilbert, an injured fawn in the care of Dr. Moshe Oz, is sealed.

“It’s very hard, he’s being medicated, given lots of food and lots of love,” said Dr. Oz.

Gilbert was turned into Rose Valley Veterinary Hospital in West Kelowna three days ago with a severe injury to his leg. Dr. Oz said he would provide the ailing creature with the medical care it needed, but the fawn’s survival is not so simple as that.

Gilbert will be an amputee, which means turning him into the wild is no longer an option. He’s in need of a licenced sanctuary, and there’s nothing that fits the bill within the 200-kilometre radius required by the provincial government.

“We had an extension for 24 hours to find one and I got a call this morning saying we have until 5 p.m. to try and save the baby,” said Dr. Oz.

It’s almost impossible to find what’s needed and of the many calls Dr. Oz has fielded, to date, none have fit the bill.

They need to have a licence to have adult deer for the rest of its life, they need to know how to do rehab, they need to be willing to do it and have veterinary care available.

Dr. Oz said he’s never dealt with such a difficult case.

“We are trying everything,” he said, adding that optimism is fading. “I have given my heart. But I think, we have put a man on the moon, we should be able to find a way to save Gilbert.”

His best hope right now is an out of province sanctuary. There are rules about transferring wildlife beyond 200 km, but they are based on carrying diseases that Dr. Oz said he could test for if need be.

If time runs out and there’s no answer, however, Dr. Oz hopes there’s a chance that Gilbert may have changed things in the future.

“Maybe it will start a motion to raise awareness about the need for any type of sanctuary — we know there’s a need,” he said.  

It certainly has inspired the people at Kangaroo Creek Farm, who don’t currently have the ability to take on the fawn.

“This is a heartbreaking situation. It looks easy on the surface to most people i.e. let Dr. Oz fix Gilbert's leg, and then take him somewhere nice where he can live out his life in protected comfort,” reads a Facebook post, highlighting the licensing requirements for taking on the fawn.

Kangaroo Creek Farm does not have such a license and fawns that have been taken to them in the past have been transferred to Critter Care in Vancouver for rehabilitation and release.

In the future, however, they may be more able to help.

“We will look into getting a wildlife license in the future,” reads the post. “Our new location will provide ample room for suitable terrain.”

Until then Dr. Oz said they are just doing their best at the animal clinic and ask that people just keep their fingers crossed and send good vibes.

Better yet, a contact to a licenced wildlife refuge with a hankering to help.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Kathy Michaels or call 250-718-0428 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2019
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