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Squirrel dilemma

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  • Squirrel dilemma

    Posting here for spam bump.

    File this in the “Shoulda known better category”

    So we’re at a family gathering earlier where they have a big town wide yard sale day. Head out for a walk with my daughter, her boyfriend and my niece to check things out. We get just down the block and run into a couple young teen girls playing with an adolescent gray squirrel on the sidewalk. It’s obviously quite tame, as we approach the girls continue on and the bugger runs up to my daughter and climbs on her leg.


    She and her cousin pet the thing for a bit then we get up as a crowd is starting to gather. It stays with her so she reaches down and picks it up again.


    She’s off to the side but other people are trying to get by as she sets it back down. Next thing that happens is it runs back to the main sidewalk right in front of an older guy pushing a bag lady type cart. The dang thing gets between his feet and the cart, he’s not looking and half steps on it then literally kicks it to the side. I honestly don’t think he realized what it was, just that something was in his way.

    My daughter gets this look of panic on her face, it’s obviously hurt and she feels responsible. We pick it up and it appears uninjured other than it’s sort of having seizures. Bunch of folks are asking “Is it ok?”. I’m just thinking we need to get it out of here now so we head back to my cousin’s place to figure it out.


  • #2
    Did it occur to you that what you think is cuddling up is actually disorientation due to illness?


    • #3
      Back at the house we get a box and set it in the shade to leave it be for a bit. Once in awhile it cries out and sometimes staggers around the box but mostly it just sits there or lays somewhat on its side. It ain’t looking good. When it’s time to go we take it with us because I can’t just leave the thing there.

      Here at home my daughter puts a little hay in the box from her rabbit supply, it’s mostly been sleeping since getting in the truck. She also gets a dropper syringe of water and I slowly give it some. It immediately starts drinking which perks it up a bit. Problem is now it’s awake but still not right. I put it back in the box and leave it be again.

      About an hour later i check on it again.


      Repeat giving it water and it comes to somewhat once again. I start checking it over closer and notice the top of it’s head feels soft compared to other spots of its skull. I’m thinking the guy gave it a skull fracture.


      Put it back in the box and it scratches its ear, which is the one normal thing it does once in awhile. It still isn’t right at this point but mostly has just been sleeping when left alone.


      Last edited by fitch270; 09-10-2022, 09:33 PM.


      • #4
        So the problem is how long do I give it before throwing in the towel so to speak?

        My daughter feels guilty but I told her something bad probably would have happened to it eventually. It’s obviously a juvenile and there was a sibling with it that stayed in a tree but let you get real close. I suspect somebody has been feeding them directly, possibly out of hand which is why it would run up to people as they came near. Not to mention being on a village street with traffic and dogs and cats around.

        At this point it isn’t exactly suffering. It’s hurt but out of it for the most part. I’m thinking we’ll give it the night and go from there. If it’s just concussed bad we’ll nurse it along. Otherwise I’ll have to end it. Hoping for its sake and my daughter’s it comes around.


        • #5
          Originally posted by dewman View Post
          Did it occur to you that what you think is cuddling up is actually disorientation due to illness?
          Been thinking on that yes. We’ve washed our hands every time we’ve touched it.

          Typing at the same time here. Its behavior before being booted was that of begging. It totally acted like it was looking for a hand out and had no issue with mobility at all. When the guy kicked it it was instantly incapacitated.

          In my mind I kept going back to it having an illness during the ride home but realized that we all handle wild critters constantly when we’re successful hunting. Personally I never wear gloves when dressing game animals. I’ve had similar conversations with my Taxidermist. He’s been in business over 40 years, handled thousands and thousands of animals and never had worn gloves.

          Is it a possibility, absolutely. I just don’t want to fall in the trap of making more of an issue than necessary.


          • #6
            Sound wisdom you have. I do not dispute your logic. 🌽👍


            • #7
              If I had wisdom I would have to her to leave the thing alone to start with. But here we are.

              Some progress overnight. He’s still lethargic but has gained motor function. No little spasms or acting uncoordinated. Sleeping mostly but drinking water when we give him the dropper. Guess we give him more time, he doesn’t appear to be stressed.

              Not sure what we do if he bounces back but isn’t “all there”. The wife isn’t letting a squirrel live in the house.



              • #8
                I've shot a couple of animals that just weren't "acting" normal.
                I inspected them with a stick, but left them where they fell.
                I've been picking up dead game since I was 6. That's 66 years. Never used gloves.gloves.
                I've known several people who had pet squirrels, coons, skunks, etc, etc....
                NEVER felt trying to domesticate a wild animal was good. Larry got nailed by his pet squirrel. It died soon after his dad got home that afternoon!


                • #9
                  It’s not looking good. My daughter was welled up in tears tonight holding him. He’s still drinking when we use the dropper but sleeps constantly. For lack of a better word he seems comfortable otherwise I wouldn’t have let it drag out this long. Sunday she made a bed out of a box and filled it with cedar shavings, we put that in a pet carrier in case he bounced back. I figure he didn’t deserve to get stomped by that idiot, as long as he’s not struggling we can let him go out peacefully on his own. Maybe that’s not fair either but it’ll be easier on my little girl.

                  I’ve discussed the situation with her several times. I haven’t mentioned it but part of my concern is this may push her
                  away from wanting to hunt anymore. Time will tell I guess.



                  • #10
                    Hard on kids. If she weren't somewhat upset, I'd be more worried. fitch270, from our discussions and your postings, you've done a tremendous job teaching your kids that life isn't always a bed of roses or fair.
                    It just is what it is.

                    Through the years, as my two grew, we nearly always had dogs, cats, chickens, rabbits, goats, sheep, horses, etc.
                    The chickens, rabbits, goats and sheep were labeled as table fare and they knew it. Dad was a hunter and killed stuff and they ate it. Que sera, sera!
                    The animals we butchered out of the yard, I tried to always make them a part of the process. Not to be mean, but so they knew their burger was part of an animal! It just wasn't out of a little cellophane wrapped white plastic tray.! 😖

                    They are now 43 and 41. It wasn't until recently they informed me that they had eaten "Tigger" and "Dodger" and "Speck" and "Snowball", etc, etc!
                    I had tried to discourage it, but they had names for some of the animals we had eaten.
                    The oldest was upset when we went to gramps house and I helped him slaughter 2 pigs.
                    She let me know later, the first one we slaughtered was, "her favorite pig"!
                    The youngest, on the other hand, stood there and watched as I gutted the first pig.
                    There was an absolute string of, "What's that?" questions and grandad handled them well, until she pointed to his penis and said, "What's that?"
                    Grandad turned 40 shades of red before stammering out, "Ask your dad!".
                    I continued what I was doing and simply stated, "That's his penis."
                    She said, "Oh.", then pointed to another body part and continued the quiz!

                    I've always tried to answer kids, especially my kids, with proper names instead of street slang. The words still came out at the wrong time in innocent conversations, but at least it wasn't some vile street slang! 🤢


                    • #11
                      Well thankfully it’s finished. He was breathing this morning but wouldn’t take water or move. When we got home he was in the same position she’d left him, cool to the touch and stiff. She was ok until the hole was dug. Used the cedar shavings to make a “nest” for him to rest in. Didn’t want to over do it but still let her have some peace with the whole ordeal.


                      • #12
                        Prognosis was never good, but let your daughter know she did well making sure he was as comfortable as possible. All the Fitches did a good thing.


                        • #13
                          What amflyer said.^^^




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