“She could have been helped. It doesn’t make any sense,” said Calder. “I’m a mom; if there’s a baby animal, I’m going to try and help it.”
The Calders, from Glenwood, originally discovered the young moose near their cabin.
The animal was alone, separated from its mother, and nearly drowned trying to cross a brook. That’s when Andrew, her husband, made the decision to step in and bring the calf home.
Calder was able to bottle-feed the calf goat’s milk and the couple stayed up all night looking after the terrified animal.
In the morning, she called the Gander SPCA.
Upon inspection, the calf was only three-days old but surprisingly alert.
“She was very young but bright eyed. She was checked for ticks, was walking around and was even playing with our dogs,” said Calder.
The SPCA came to collect the moose and, pending another checkup, was planning on giving the animal to the Salmonier Nature Park.
However, hours later, she received the heartbreaking news; the park couldn’t take the animal and it was euthanized.
“If I had known, they would have never gotten her,” said Calder.
The SPCA said that the checkup revealed that the calf was badly dehydrated and had diarrhea.
Calder said she thinks more could have been done but she doesn’t blame the SPCA.
“She’s only three days old; put her on an IV,” she said. “I know contacting them was the right thing . . . at the same time, the outcome being what it was, it’s hard.”
Moving forward, Calder hopes that authorities will work harder to seek other options before euthanizing animals; euthanization should be the last option, not the first.
“Where are these animals supposed to go if this is the result? It’s not fair.”
The Beacon reached out to the Salmonier Nature Park and the provincial wildlife department for comment, but no one has responded.
We will provide further updates as they become available.