Well, this is awkward - and not exactly 'livestock' (or a pet).

Discussion in 'Other Pets & Livestock' started by Becky_H, Jun 4, 2011.

  1. Becky_H

    Becky_H Songster

    I got a message on facebook from an old high school friend who knows I'm still into animal rescue. He'd hit a 2-3 day old fawn with his riding lawnmower, thought it had a broken leg, and asking if I could help. I did exactly enough research to find out that a-) it's young enough that the leg will heal and be fine and b-) we have an wild-life rehab facility locally, but he has no such luck. So, I got back to him and said I'd pick it up from him, keep it over a weekend and get it to the facility.

    What did not occur to me, but should have, that as a 5013c organization, this wild-life facility is as over-filled and under-funded as the dog rescue I work with, and at this time of year it's *worse* for them. So, you know. I have an illegal baby deer, who WILL be able to heal but will (may, I'm paranoid) be too old for the facility to rehab by the time they're capable of taking her.

    What I should do, legally, is contact the Game Warden, who will put the deer down and necropsy it for disease. I'm pretty pragmatic. If it was suffering, ill, or going to die miserably or have nowhere to go, ever, then it wouldn't bother me. Since it DOES have all of these things, including somewhere to be safely released, I'm way, way less comfortable with this.

    But I also really, really don't want to get into trouble.

    I realize there's no magical solution but - seriously, how do I get myself into these messes? Oh, right. As soon as people know you're an 'animal person', much less associated with a rescue, you may as well have your forehead tattooed with 'sucker' on it.
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2011
  2. they'reHISchickens

    they'reHISchickens Songster

    Oct 31, 2008
    I'd think the game warden might be willing to give you a permit to raise it if you are willing to care and heal it? Maybe they have alternative plans at rehabs too?
  3. SpringChickens

    SpringChickens Songster

    Feb 1, 2009
    Lexington, KY
    You might consider calling the game warden about your "friend" that found a fawn with a broken leg and see what they say. Theoretically, if they are a good person, they should be willing to issue a permit if you can show that you can give acceptable care and plan on rehabilitating it to release it. If you do end up keeping the fawn, you should talk extensively with the wildlife rehab people and see what they suggest for rehabilitation and release.

    Good luck!! Sounds like you're doing the right thing!! [​IMG]
  4. debilorrah

    debilorrah The Great Guru of Yap

    There is a member here, a younger person, who also took in a fawn. Her name is Emyzz or Emzzy. Try to email her.
  5. Becky_H

    Becky_H Songster

    Oh, yeah. I'm going to talk to people and see what can be done. I am not unwilling to do the work, at all. I'm just unwilling to go to jail. ...I like animals a lot, but I like not being in jail more. At least I suspect I do (never having been, but I figure it's a safe bet).

    Edited to Add:
    Also, I have to be honest here: I read the other thread and while I'm hardly looking to start another debate, and I understand why she made the decisions she made (especially at 16), it isn't (ethically) the same decision I would make in those circumstances. The ONLY reason I'm wobbling here at all is we have enough posted land, with deer on it, in my family that she can be released safely (since she's a she).

    I'm expanding my list to find a licensed wildlife rehab person. I will be spending all day Monday on the phone, but at the end of the day - I'm a person. I don't have a herd of deer or interest in keeping goats. The deer is a herd animal, and a wild one at that. Saving her from death now only helps if she can have a LIFE after she's healed and eating on her own.

    So: Anyone know how old deer need to be to be released?
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2011
  6. equine623

    equine623 Songster

    Mar 17, 2009
    NE PA
    Where are you? Honestly what the game warden will say varies widely state to state. As far as release, she can't be released until the leg is fully healed - that will play more of a role then her age. Sometimes I've seen does adopt fawns of other does, after one is say hit by a car. But that is also pretty variable. Ultimately she needs to be raised with other fawns, to learn herd behavior and not adapt strongly to people. A full grown deer can kill you, yes more often a buck will but if a doe associates people with care and comfort and hangs around too much, you still have the risk of a buck attack during rut, just because he will be attempting to eliminate what in his mind is competition.

    Pm me with what state you are in, I'll see if I know anyone there.
  7. klf73

    klf73 Mad Scientist

    Jun 1, 2008
    well, I am not one to ask probably [​IMG] I believe in the "it's better to ask for forgiveness than permission" . I play stupid, if you haven't done anything in the past I don't think they would just toss you in jail [​IMG] I would care for it, not tell anyone and research how to raise to release...but that's just me. I have had way too many animals I thought I was helping get put down because of lack of funding..... may not be what others would do but dh and I are pretty self sufficient....in every way.
    Problem with letting anyone know you have it is if they say no then you have no other recourse...jmo and just what I would do [​IMG] sure it won't be the consensus....
  8. guinea fowl galore

    guinea fowl galore Songster

    May 12, 2009
    What kind of mowers do you have over the rainbow. the ones here sure don't go fast enough to hit a DEER.
    was this guy chasing it down trying to hit it or is he blind.
  9. SillyChicken

    SillyChicken Crowing

    Jan 12, 2010
    Quote:A fawn will hunker down low in the grass and not move at all especially if danger is present. The guy probably didn't see it. He could have been mowing close to a meadow and just caught the leg.

    Seeing that you're from Australia, you probably aren't familar with white tail deer. The fawns will curl up in a ball and lay low.. even when a coyote or lawn mower comes toward them, they'll stay as still as they can in hopes that they are just too hard to spot by the preditor.
    Last edited: Jun 6, 2011
  10. carolinagirl58

    carolinagirl58 Songster

    Mar 30, 2011
    Lugoff, SC
    If you do decide to raise it, it's important to not make a pet out of it. don't pet it, love on it, let the kids or dogs near it. Don't keep it in the house. A doe leaves her fawn alone for many hours a day so don't worry about him being lonely...he is used to that. He needs to never get comfortable with you or he won't stand a chance of making it in the wild. I raised quite a few fawns (I was a licensed rehabber) and my fawns actually would not even come up to me unless I had their bottles. I kept them outside in a large pen that was overgrown with weeds. I kept a gentle old nanny goat in there for companionship, although that probably wasn't necessary. The main thing to remember is taming this fawn is the worst thing you can do for it. When it is released, it needs to be afraid of people, not be looking for free food.

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