Critter Care Wildlife Society’s new animal ambassador, a female river otter, recently gave birth to three otter pups.
Ms. Dame Judy Denture, Ms. Dame for short, was first located in North Vancouver in poor health just days before the New Year. Critter Care arrived on scene to capture the otter to further examine it.
“On arrival at the centre it was clear she had been struggling for a long time,” Critter Care said in a release. “She was thirsty and very hungry. As we examined her we could tell that something was amiss.”
A veterinary examination discovered Ms. Dame is approximately seven to nine years old, and she had virtually no working front teeth.
“The nerves were exposed and were likely extremely painful,” Critter Care said. “This would have been impairing her ability to eat.”
Ms. Dame was found weighting 14 pounds with her fur covered in mites.
After six weeks on a specialized diet and medication Ms. Dame’s health saw a “vast improvement.”
“She had doubled in weight and was showing what a sweetheart she is,” the wildlife society said.
In February, the wildlife organization fronted the cost and teamed up with a specialized dental surgeon to provide Ms. Dame treatment. The hour and a half operation removed seven teeth and performed three root canals.
“As time progressed, we made the decision that she can not be released back into the wild,” Critter Care said. “Even with her new dental job, it would be nearly impossible for her to live as a wild otter with her teeth situation.”
The wildlife society believes Ms. Dame’s behaviour is proof she isn’t stressed by the presence of humans.
“Her friendly behaviour helped us make the decision to keep her as Critter Care’s new animal ambassador, as many of you would know Hoover was many years ago,” the society said.
To the society’s surprise, Ms. Dame welcomed three otter pups on March 22 – two males a female, Custard, Jam and Scone.
These babies will be released into the wild next spring, Critter Care noted.
“Ms. Dame will live out the remainder of her life comfortably at Critter Care Wildlife Society with all the love, affection and fish she can receive,” the society said.