I cover her head with a blanket while I am doing this just to help her feel more secure and calm. Most of the time she just sits and lets me do my thing. Tonight, she actually reacted to the fluids being administered for the first time. This is a good sign. It means she is feeling much better.
After, she poked her head out of the blanket to inspect my work. Her body condition has improved dramatically over the past few days. The points of her hips and spine are far less defined than they were three days ago, and her ribs now have an almost normal pad of flesh over them. Her apetite is really good. She eats every scrap of food I put infront of her, and I have been filling the bowl.
Tonight is more soaked dog food, fresh greens, a raw egg, some grapes, and carrot pieces. I expect the bowl will be empty by morning. I am glad she is eatting so well. She needs all the nutrition she can get.
I still plan on worming her this weekend and then maybe it will be time for her to be wild again. She is almost ready!
I finally really got my hands on Abigale. I have started her on sub-q fluids. I have given her a couple of days to destress and aclimate to her surroundings before really doing anything with her. I looked her over thoroughly today. She doesn’t have any major injuries, but she is VERY thin. I can feel the points of her hips, and her spine. She has been eatting very well the past couple of days, so I am a bit suprised that she is that thin, but the way she is acting, I am not completely suprised by it. Her belly is also rather firm, indicating a heavy internal parasite load. I will be going to the ranch again this weekend, and I will see about worming her then.
I brought her inside to administer fluids. You can see the bulge on her side where I gave them to her. Sorry I could not take a picture of the process, but I didn’t have enough hands!
Tonight, dinner is soaked dog food, to ensure she is getting plenty of protien, a raw egg, blueberries, banana pieces, and a few mealworms.
There is also some liquid vitamins in the mix. Looks delicious, no? She isn’t too happy with me for the fluids, but she will thank me later. They will help her feel better. Once she is back up to a good body weight, and acting normal, I will make her wild again.
Maybe not as glamerous as rehabilitating a bobcat, but for Abigale, I made a difference; even if she won’t appreciate it 🙂
I was doing some research on my own, just to see what kind of information I could find out there on bobcats…the problem is, there really isn’t any consistant information. One site I came across (a .edu site, no less) even stated that baby bobcats have a well defined rosette pattern to their coat, but as they grow, their spots become less defined. this is NOT TRUE! Quincy is a great example of that. Here is a close up of his side, just to show you what I mean. He does not have well defined rosettes on his coat, nor will he develop them as he ages. Instead, for the most part, he has this freckled, mottled coat pattern.
Whatever coat pattern bobcats are born with, they keep through adulthood. Quincy will always have a freckled coat, and always has. You can see a few little rosettes towards his belly.
On the same token, we have several adult bobcats who DO have well defined rosette pattern to their coats.
You can see the difference in the clouded pattern of Hoover’s coat verses the freckled look of Quincy’s. Hoover’s brother Kirby, on the other hand, did not have rosettes. He had almost no spots at all.
A few of the goals at WCCR is to replace mis-information like this with good, solid, accurate information, and to augment the minimal knowledge that is available out there on this species.