The Toronto Wildlife Center is out with a warning about leg-hold traps after a raccoon died of injuries sustained while being caught in the device.
TWC said that last Sunday morning, it received a call in the Keel and Shepard neighborhood about a raccoon with a leg-hold trap clamped tightly to the animal.
It said Toronto Animal Services rushed to the scene but were unable to capture the frightened animal as it escaped from below a deck, but TWC’s team managed to capture the injured raccoon.
“They carefully pulled out the raccoon and the trap and placed it in a carrier, then headed for TWC,” it said.
“Shocked to our veterinary and rehabilitation teams,” it wrote, “the trap caused irreparable damage to the raccoon’s leg and foot, causing it excruciating pain.”
After removing the net from the raccoon’s leg while the little one was under anesthesia, they found that his leg was “completely severed and could not be saved.”
“The raccoon needs all four limbs to be able to climb, forage and thrive, and releasing it in this state will only cause further suffering,” it said.
“With a heavy heart, the difficult decision was taken to humanely euthanize the patient, who had already endured too much.”
TWC stated that these conditions usually result in a painful end to the life of an innocent animal, and are “unnecessary and easily preventable”, with these traps leading many animals to be brought to TWC for emergency care. .
“Such inhumane traps are set brutally in Toronto and other cities,” it said, “that these traps do not discriminate, meaning that any animal (including pets) may be accidentally caught, injured or killed. It is impossible to track an unmarked trap, especially if the captured animal moves the trap away from where it was originally set.”
If you see a body catching net, or someone sets one, TWC is asking you to contact the Forest Ministry, and adds that the province is now investigating.
It is illegal in Ontario to set leg-hold traps for fur animals unless you have a license.
680 News has reached out to the province for comment.