Letter: Bottle-raised deer are more likely to be trouble

Editor,

I read the rampaging deer article with interest.

As a veterinarian working on South Whidbey for the past 29 years, I have treated many dogs and cats who have been stomped by deer.

My heart goes out to those who have lost or have injured pets.

Some of these incidents are the result of protective does who have a fawn hidden in the area.

Unfortunately, a large percentage of the worst deer offenders are bucks or does who have been bottle-raised by humans.

Well-meaning but misinformed people assume a fawn in their yard is an orphan when in reality the mother only visits two or three times a day.

This is the deer strategy for survival and the fawn is well taken care of.

Bottle-raised fawns lose their fear of people, dogs and cats.

Those does with fawns are more likely to attack in the spring and bucks are more likely to attack in fall, the breeding season.

Bottom line: Do not raise these animals at home. If in doubt, call someone first or research online.

If you are bottle-raising a fawn now, please release it to PAWS Wildlife Center in Lynnwood.

Dave Parent, DVM

Useless Bay Animal Clinic

Freeland

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