Black Bear yearling #17-1559

Admission Date: 
June 24, 2017
Location of Rescue: 
Shenandoah County, VA
Cause of Admission / Condition: 
Hit by vehicle
Patient Status: 
Current Patient

On June 24, a Black Bear yearling was hit by a car while feeding on a deer carcass on the side of the road in Shenandoah County. An officer with the Virginia Department of Game & Inland Fisheries picked up and transported the bear to the Wildlife Center that same day.

Drs. Alexa and Ernesto examined the male bear upon admission; the bear was quiet and alert before they tranquilized it for a hands-on physical examination. No broken bones were found, though radiographs indicated fluid in the chest [likely blood], and bruising to the lungs. The veterinary team administered pain medication and fluids, as well as a sedative to keep the bear calm in the Center's indoor holding facility overnight. The bear weighed 20.60 kg.

The bear made it through the weekend, which was the most critical period following the initial internal trauma. On Monday morning, Dr. Ernesto noted that the bear was still having difficulty breathing. The team plans to anesthetize the bear to provide a critical-care set-up that will provide supplemental oxygen.

Your donation helps to provide specialized medical care for this injured bear, as well as the 2,500 animals that will be admitted to the Wildlife Center this year.



July 6, 2017

During the weekend, Black Bear yearling #17-1559 continued to make daily improvements. The bear became increasingly more active and has been eating all of his food. As of July 5, there were no noted respiratory issues. The bear will remain in the Center’s Bear Pens for the immediate future, just to ensure that the bear continues to remain in good health. 

June 30, 2017

Earlier this week, Dr. Ernesto was able to set up a makeshift oxygen chamber for Black Bear yearling #17-1559, to assist with the bear's labored breathing. The bear has been a challenging patient to care for; the bear is large enough that the veterinary team needs to sedate the bear for any hands-on treatments, but injured enough that a number of regular treatments are needed.

Fortunately, on June 29, the bear was much brighter and began eating on his own. The bear's breathing was still labored, but started to show signs of improvement. The following day, additional improvements were noted; Drs. Ernesto and Alexa decided that the bear had improved enough to move to an outdoor Bear Pen enclosure. The staff will carefully monitor the bear in the coming days but are encouraged by the yearling's progress.