Feisty baby seal a long way from home

This week saw a very special patient arrive at the shelter, a very first for us.

This week saw a very special patient arrive at the shelter, a very first for us.

Last Tuesday we received a call about a seal pup injured on a beach in Clogherhead, Co Louth.

The Seal Sanctuary were unable to help the pup at the time and with it being so ill, the stress of travelling from Louth to Dingle would have been too much for the young pup anyway.

As there was nowhere closer that could help the pup we agreed to assist.

The pup was rescued from the beach and was transported to Naas where one of our volunteers collected her and brought her to the shelter and then to our vets. We spent two hours cleaning out her badly infected wounds on her front right flipper and also her two back flippers.

She also had some wounds to her head and body. She had a very high temperature due to the infection that was threatening to take her life. She was placed on strong antibiotics and pain relief in the hope that they would fight the infection

Once back at the shelter, we placed her in to one of our wildlife units that we had prepared for her.

She is only three to four weeks old and must have been terrified to be away from her mother for the first time. Had she not been rescued she would have died within days.

After a sleepless night we went to check on her at first light and found her to be in good form.

Then we began the difficult task of catching her to clean her wounds and give her medication. We also had to tube feed her as she was not eating on her own. It took four of us to treat her because we wanted to do it as quickly and cause as little stress on her as possible. We did this process twice a day.

After two days, we had managed to get her temperature back to normal and her wounds were starting to look a lot better. The Dingle Wildlife and Seal Sanctuary had released some seals on Thursday so they arranged to take our girl on Friday.

One of their volunteers called to the shelter on Friday afternoon and as we loaded her up in the travel crate he told us that it was one of the most feisty seals he had dealt with. Just our luck for our very first seal patient!

The Dingle Wildlife and Seal Sanctuary have been a great help and support and will keep us updated on her progress and will inform us of her release date so that we can be there to see her go back to the wild.

It has been an absolute pleasure to take care of this beautiful marine mammal and all our volunteers have been brilliant and have got involved in her care. I’d like to thank them all for their kindness.

- Kildare Animal Foundation