|By Maya Nishikawa|
|Published April 15, 2007|
(WCCO) Sandstone, Minn. – The Wildcat Sanctuary in Sandstone, Minn. has opened its first hospital and Sunday some of its new additions received the first surgeries.
A young cougar named Matty is getting some much needed medical attention. Just a few months ago, the young cougar was living in a horse stall with other large cats at a New York game farm. She was rescued by the Wildcat Sanctuary and has been living at their new facility in Sandstone.
Matty and two other cougars are the first animals to have surgery at the sanctuary’s new hospital.
“She’s already had antibiotics, they’ve already had pain medication. We’re also going to microchip Matty,” said veterinarian Dr. John Baillie.
It cost close to $20,000 to build the hospital and buy the anesthesia equipment needed for large cat surgeries.
“It’s going to allow us to take care of the lions and tigers ourselves. In a situation that we can do it properly and much faster and a lot less stress than having to transport them to the university,” said Baillie.
All of the cats have been rescued and many come to the sanctuary malnourished and in need of other medical care.
“Unfortunately too many people want to keep the exotic in their home and the idea of it is much more wonderful than the reality of it,” Tammy Quist of the Wildcat Sanctuary.
The new grounds in Sandstone have allowed the sanctuary to go from 20 to 87 cats. They also have larger habitats with room to roam.
The sanctuary is still a work in progress. They’re building a new habitat for the cougars and hope to get more medical equipment. The sanctuary hopes these efforts will help these majestic animals live out the rest of their days in peace.