When this baby jaguar was sent to a veterinary hospital, doctors noticed that the big cat could not move its legs. The an x-ray report revealed the heartwrenching reason.
In 2016, a good Samaritan in Ecuador contacted TUERI, a wildlife animal rescue organization, after discovering a baby jaguar alone and unable to move her legs. The big cat was taken to the veterinary hospital, where veterinaries sent her for an x-ray after seeing that she was tetraplegic—the results showed that the poor animal had 18 bullets lodged inside her body. It’s believed that the baby jaguar was a victim of indiscriminate hunting.
Veronica Cabrera, a veterinary student at San Francisco de Quito University in Ecuador, told The Dodo. “Every week we receive wild animals from all over the country who are victims of indiscriminate hunting.”
“We want her story to be known by everyone, so people can prevent or stop hunting animals,” Cabrera said.
“We don’t know exactly what happened because villagers don’t want to give information, but she was found next to a palm plantation without her mother,” Cabrera said. “We suppose they were too close to the plantation and were shot.”
Though two bullets had damaged the jaguar’s spinal cord, the veterinaries believed there was still hope for her.
Named D’yaira by the veterinaries, she was sent for surgery to have most of the bullets removed. However, some bullets were embedded in her bones so could not be removed. After the surgery, D’yaira started showing signs of improvement and could even change her position and move her legs.
Cabrera said that D’yaira can now even eat 15 to 20 chicken breasts per day without a problem. “She is getting stronger,” she added.
By 2017, D’yaira had recovered and learned how to hunt, and she even became a skillful swimmer under the watchful eye of veterinaries from Darwin Animal Doctors. Now her rescuers are planning to release her back to the wild, but a tracking collar needs to be purchased to keep a watch on D’yaira’s whereabouts. “This collar is essential to tracking D’Yaria’s progress and advancing long-term jaguar conservation efforts in Ecuador,” the organization’s website noted.
According to a photo uploaded on Oct. 25 to the organization’s Facebook page, the organization has managed to raise $2,500 to purchase a satellite-tracking collar for D’yaira and she is now one step closer to being released back to the wild.