There is no task, or as it would happen, cast, too small for the veterinary clinic to tackle here at Lollypop Farm. Avery, a 1-month-old baby chinchilla, arrived at the shelter in early February. This tiny critter, already delicate due to his age and size, was in rough shape.
His owner decided to surrender Avery for his own safety. Avery was bred at home. Sadly, his mother had been rather rough with the baby and had a history of biting him. A few days before coming to Lollypop Farm, Avery’s hind foot had been severely injured, and several of his tiny toes were missing. He was also underweight, even for his size. “Avery came to us malnourished— he was unable to get the milk he needed from his mother,” said Dr. Ann Marie McNamara, Veterinarian at Lollypop Farm.
Scared and likely in pain, Avery clung to a small fluffy hedgehog toy in his cage for comfort.
He had several small puncture wounds on his thorax and abdomen that were already in the process of healing. Avery would need to be anesthetized in order to examine the extent of his injuries and attempt to clean his damaged foot—a process that can be potentially dangerous for an animal of his size and age. There was a risk he might not successfully wake back up.
Once under anesthesia, Avery’s tiny foot was carefully cleaned and bandaged. “It has to have been the smallest cast I’ve ever done,” said Dr. McNamara.
Avery made it through his first procedure, and his second. Now his bandages are changed weekly to make sure that his foot continues to heal. Because of how delicate and sensitive Avery is, he has to be put under anesthesia each time his bandages are removed and his wounds are examined, a process that continues to be tenuous for him.
Every pet, no matter how small, deserves a second chance. While we are still uncertain what the future holds for Avery, our veterinarians are doing everything in their power to give him the best care possible to try to get him out of the woods.
Our hope is that once Avery is strong enough, he will go into foster care with an experienced chinchilla owner while he continues to grow, and maybe one day will be ready to find a happy home of his own.
It is only with the support of friends like you that we are able to provide second chances for pets in need. No gift is too small when it comes to saving a pet, especially one as tiny as Avery. Make a gift to help us care for pets like Avery now, and make sure to tune in for our Tails of Hope Telethon on Saturday, March 3, broadcast live from Eastview Mall from 3 – 9 p.m.
Give now to make hope possible: www.lollypop.org/telethon