British Divers Marine Life Rescue
British Divers Marine Life Rescue (photo: Steve Marsh)
British Divers Marine Rescue


2007-03-12 14:22:36

Seal Pup - Inverbervie

I received a phone call from Elaine Roft, our area Co-ordinator, at 5.40pm to say that Charlene Kane from Inverbervie had contacted her to say that there was a seal pup on the beach between Inverbervie and Gourdon (quite high up on the tide line and distressed) and would we be able to check on the pup. I phoned Medic Rebecca Chambers and left a message re. the pup saying that Medic Paul Horne & myself would pick up the tank from her house if she was not there. Fortunately when we arrived at Johnshaven, Becs was there and offered to come and help us (great as I am still on crutches and didn't relish having to carry the tank with Paul). We Arrived at Inverbervie and found the pup who appeared quite content with life. Respirations at this time was 13 per min, though each breath was quite heavy and laboured. The pup appeared to have good body weight though a little thin around the neck and, on closer inspection, a lot of loose saggy skin determining that it was underweight for its size. I called Elaine who asked if we would uplift the pup whilst she spoke to Faye Archell BDMLR on call to organise a relay to SSPCA Middlebank (as Lawrence at New Deer had no room for the pup). Paul and Becs went to fetch the tank. The pup was still quite relaxed though respirations had gone up to 17 per minute. Whilst Paul straddled the pup Rebecca sexed the pup (Female named "Charlene"), almost sure as it was by now very dark and the torch was beginning to fade, and temperature was 36 degrees. We Got the pup into the tank and Paul, Rebecca and a member of the Public, Stuart, carried the tank back to the car. A BIG THANKS STUART FOR YOUR HELP. We drove back to Rebeccas house at Johnshaven where I again phoned Elaine who told me that a relay had been organised and would we meet Tayforth Co-ordinator Alan Muir at Focus car park in Arbroath around 7.45pm. Becs offered to start the relay from Johnshaven to Arbroath, accommpanied by Paul. Before setting off the pup was settled in the tank.

Sue Horne
Montrose / Arbroath Areas

I picked up the grey pup at 8.10pm, respiration 15bpm. I drove to Dundee where I was joined by medic Donna Sutherland (on her first callout). Donna was unsure of the location of SSPCA Middlebank so I suggested that she should accompany me on this occasion for future reference. We continued to SSPCA Middlebank arriving at 9.45pm. Pup was assessed on arrival and found to have a large swelling on the left shoulder and to be bleeding from its back passage. Pup also seemed dehydrated and to be having some difficulty with its breathing.

I assisted the SSPCA officer (Alexis) by restraining the pup as medication was administered. It was given noraclav (sp?) antibiotic and rymidhal (sp?) anti-imflammatory/pain relief. The pup was also tubed to administer fluids for dehydration. A vet will give a complete examination first thing Tuesday morning. We returned home, arriving approx 11.45pm.

Allan Muir
BDMLR (Tayforth)

This email came from Alexis:

Hi Elaine,
Thought I'd drop you a quick mail to let you know the details of the seal (Charlene) I recepted this evening. We have named her "Laura". I could not weigh her as my scales have gone on the blink and I can't charge the other ones until tomorrow. She was not awfully great I'm afraid, respiration looked a bit laboured and she has a fairly big swelling on her left shoulder. I suspect it may be an abscess. Her faeces also looked black and a little blood-stained. As a precaution I have left a note for Jackie to call the vet out tomorrow. In the meantime I have administered antibiotics, anti-inflammatory/painkiller and rehydrated her.

I sincerely hope she is ok. I had to estimate a weight for her and I reckon she will be around the 12 kg mark, so not a very big pup. She did look quite plump but there was a fair bit of loose skin which may indicate that she is in fact underweight for her size. Her reference number is 210.

Thanks Elaine,

Alexis Bailey
SSPCA Middlebank

Thanks to Medics Rebecca Chambers / Paul Horne / Volunteer Sue Horne / Donna Sutherland / Co-ordinators Elaine Roft & Allan Muir / BDMLR on call Faye Archell / M.O.P Charlene Kane & Stuart / Alexis Bailey SSPCA