Rescued Seal Pup
AlphaPet staff Sarah Eglen (Practice Manager and BDMLR Animal Medic) and Richard Edwards (Vet) were called out today to help rescue a sick Common seal pup.
The pup had been reported behaving oddly at East Head. The pup appeared stranded on the beach and was being disturbed by members of the public and dogs. Local National Trust staff moved the pup to a less busy area of the beach and attempted to refloat the pup. Although the pup swam out for a short while, it soon came back in to the beach. It was at this point that Richard and Sarah were contacted as part of the British Divers Marine Life Rescue (BDMLR) network.
Sarah happened to be just a short drive away while walking her dogs and was able to attend very quickly. She quickly determined that the pup was underweight and appeared ill. The mother was nowhere to be found. After telephone consultation with Richard, it was decided to uplift the pup from the beach and transport it to AlphaPet West Meads for further assessment and treatment.
On arrival at West Meads, it was quickly apparent that this was a very sick pup indeed. Weighing just 13kg, there was an abscess on the upper lip (probably a bite wound from another seal) and it was suffering from severe ulcerative gingivitis (bleeding from the gums). Richard, Sarah and other AlphaPet staff immediately began stabilisation treatment. The wounds were cleaned and disinfected, antibiotics and painkillers were administered and fluids were given by stomach tube.
Richard and Sarah (plus Richard's daughter Lorna - some school holiday this is!), then set off to Hastings to deliver the pup to the RSPCA wildlife treatment centre at Mallydams Wood (which is where this picture was taken). As you can see, the pup coped well with the journey but is still looking rather thin. Hopefully, over the next few weeks, the staff at Mallydams will continue the treatments we have started and this pup will be able to be released back to the wild.
We believe that this pup has come from a small colony resident in Chichester harbour and so the hope is that we will be able to release it back to that area when it is all better again.
We will update these posts as we get further news on this pup's progress.