Normally, wild animals will either try to run away or attack when it comes in contact with people. So when locals from Equador found a young jaguar who made no attempt to flee or attack them, they knew something must be very wrong…
The group carefully loaded the 11-month-old jaguar into the back of a pickup truck and drove her to an animal hospital five hours away. And once they delivered her to the animal hospital, the staff got to work and soon discovered why the jaguar, who they named D’Yaria, made no attempt to run away. She had been shot 18 times with a shotgun and was paralyzed.
“This is an area where people have cattle, and jaguars are known for going into farms and killing cattle, so what the locals do is just kill the jaguars to preserve the cattle,” veterinarian María Cristina Cely said. “It’s very sad.” Cely thinks D’Yaria’s mother must have also been shot, and the orphaned baby ran as far into the forest as possible before finally collapsing. “If she had not been found and she had not been treated, she would
“If she had not been found and she had not been treated, she would have not survived,” Cely said. “She was paralyzed and she would not have been able to drink water and not be able to hunt or find food for herself.”
The team wasn’t sure if D’Yaria would make it but did their best to remove the bullets and fix the part of her spine that had been damaged. Shortly after the surgery, the vet team knew everything would be ok when the determined baby started moving her legs. “She stood up and she started showing signs that she would not stay still, and that’s when everyone realized that she was going to make it,” Cely said.
The team was stunned to see how fast D’Yaria was gaining her strength and mobility back, and only one month later, she was ready to be moved to a large outdoor enclosure where she’ll finish healing and then be released back into the wild. “At this point, she’s 95 percent recovered and she runs around,” Cely said. “She’s running like it’s the last day of her life.”
“D’Yaria means brave tiger, and that’s what she’s shown,” Cely said. “She’s everything that her name says. She’s a very brave little jaguar. She fought all the way. The team has a lot of hope that she was recover 100 percent, and that she will be set free. And everyone is looking forward to seeing her grow up and being a full-grown jaguar and having little jaguars.”
Can you believe D’Yaria can walk again after being shot 18 times? Let us know what you think in the comments below and please SHARE this with friends on Facebook.
[Featured Image: Andres Ortega]