When a pet’s health takes a turn for the worse, their families can easily become despondent. Because of barriers in communication, owners are often left in the dark about what is causing their pet’s pain. The result can be a situation that takes an emotional and financial toll. Some owners, though, rise to the occasion and fight wholeheartedly for their furry companions.
For Sharon Donovan, the fight started when she first met Teddy, her 4-year-old skunk. When she first rescued him as a baby, Teddy suffered from respiratory issues and nearly didn’t make it. With Donovan’s patient care, he was able to pull through after a couple of months.
In the years that followed, Donovan and Teddy grew close. Speaking to Walkin’ Pets, she explained, “He has no clue he’s a skunk. He thinks he’s my baby!”
However, last winter his breathing issues resurfaced, and he, unfortunately, fractured his leg. Worse still, by March, the Covid-19 pandemic prevented Donovan from accessing veterinary services at the moment when Teddy needed them most.
Eventually, she was able to get an x-ray to confirm the fracture and started a treatment plan that included dietary changes and water therapy to help him recover mobility. Her patience paid off, and Teddy regained partial mobility. However, Donovan’s “happy bouncy baby” continued to struggle with moving much faster than a crawl.
Teddy had arthritis in both his hip and ankle, a result of his fracture. Continuing her fight, Donovan reached out to Gunnar’s Wheels, a non-profit that connects disabled pets and their families with resources that can help. In Teddy’s case, Gunnar’s Wheels was able to work with Walkin’ Pets, makers of custom wheelchairs for animals in need. Their main focus is dogs, though they’ve made wheelchairs for horses, ferrets, and more. Teddy was their first skunk, and he loves his new wheels!
The kind donation from Gunnar’s Wheels and Walkin’ Pets has enabled Teddy to reclaim his mobility and helped immensely with his recovery. Donovan hopes to use the wheelchair as a temporary tool as Teddy continues to recover. “He will be 5 in May, and we still have many years together,” she added.
By continuing to fight for and believe in him, Sharon Donovan was able to not only rescue Teddy and provide him with a loving home but also to rehabilitate him and protect him when he was at his most vulnerable. Teddy’s tentative first steps in the wheelchair were captured on video! Watch below: