Wednesday, July 11, 2018

Karamel the Squirrel

This spring, a young computer engineer in the province of Batman, Turkey found a squirrel stuck by its front legs in an animal trap. Many people would have simply turned away or, at best, put the injured animal out of its misery. But Ruzgar Alkan could not abandon the squirrel to her fate. Seeing that she was badly injured, he took the squirrel to a local vet in the capital of the outlying province. And when that vet told Alkan that the squirrel needed more expert help than he could provide at his clinic, the young man traveled with the injured rodent 700 miles by bus to Instabul. There she was adopted by experienced animal rehabber Tayfun Demir, who named her Caramel.

What happened next is truly remarkable. After discovering that Karamel's front legs were too badly injured and infected to be saved, Demir contacted a team of doctors at Istanbul Aymir University, who devised a plan to outfit the squirrel with a set of prosthetic legs.  After two operations, one lasting six hours, Karamel's front legs were removed and she was given a pair of wheels to move around on. The video below describes Karamel's rescue and treatment.

Of course, Caramel will never be able to live in the wild. But thanks to the caring and compassion of the people who have given so much of their time and resources to helping her, she has the opportunity for a happy life.

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