rescued 12 June 2010
released into Prickly Ball Lodge enclosed garden 1 July 2010
Fred wandered into a neighbour’s house during the day. He had a big fat grey tick attached to the fur near his right ear which was removed. A thorough investigation at the vets revealed a small but nasty tick deep down in the right ear canal – this was treated with Ivermectin and it eventually crawled out of the ear and was taken off.
He also had a bulging right eye and a sunken left , suggesting some sort of head trauma. Antibiotics at least equalised the eyes a little, but these minor physical ailments were nothing compared to the sad and unfortunate imprinting which he had been subjected to by fellow humans, as we discovered during his stay with us.
He was also wormed as he started coughing after a few days (quite normal for hogs in captivity to develop lungworm parasite symptoms). He’s very active during the day and seems a bit too ‘over friendly’ – interestingly, he had a blue marking on his forehead suggesting he had been released by someone else.
When he was in pre-release it was soon became apparent that Fred had been imprinted by humans and came out during the day – it had been thought he was blind but this was proven not to be the case. This serves as a sad example of how constantly giving hogs attention, such as cuddling them, talking to them and allowing them a free run around a house, does a lot more harm than good and takes the ‘wild’ out of wildlife. Here at Snuffle Lodge we adopt a ‘hands off’ approach apart from when checking weights, administering medication and cleaning out.
As a consequence, he cannot ever be released back into the wild, as he would be at the mercy of daytime ‘predators’, notably unsympathetic humans and canines, and be unable to feed on insects which normally only come out at night, when it’s cooler.
He relocated to Heather’s wonderful enclosed garden at Prickly Ball Lodge, Sinfin on 1st July, to join fellow Snuffle Lodge rescue hogs, Barney and Bimble.