Wildlife X-Ray

Help your local wildlife by donating to CWRS to raise $25 000 for the purchase of digital x-ray, a vital piece of diagnostic equipment. 

The Calgary Wildlife Rehabilitation Society is a registered charity #891088189 RR0001.  Tax receipts will be provided for all donors. 

Background Information: 
Calgary Wildlife Rehabilitation Society (CWRS) was established in 1993 to provide professional care for wildlife rehabilitation.  Our goal is to Rescue, Rehabilitate and Release --the three R's of responsible wildlife management.  Each year we receive over 2000 injured or orphaned wild animals and respond to thousands of wildlife-related calls from the public.  In addition, CWRS provides motivational, skill-building experiences for volunteers and valuable outreach and education services to the community.  CWRS is a registered charity and does not receive any direct government funding.   CWRS is the only veterinary based wildlife hospital within the City of Calgary.

Problem:  Currently CWRS does not have the equipment necessary to take x-rays onsite. As such, all wildlife patients requiring x-rays are driven off site to a neighboring small animal veterinary clinic that donates the use of their equipment to CWRS when required. There are a number of reasons that this is problematic.

Stress: First and foremost, it is extremely stressful for our wildlife patients to be restrained, kenneled and driven to a secondary location for necessary procedures. Such stress can lead to capture myopathy, a complex and very serious disease associated with the handling of wild animals, and death.

Time: It is time-consuming and expensive to move our patients offsite. X-rays are frequently required and often a single patient will require multiple x-rays to ensure appropriate clinical courses of action. At times x-rays are delayed by days because the wildlife technicians are working alone and cannot leave the site. Delays in treatment critically and negatively affect the prognosis for our patients.

Suitability: Small animal veterinary clinics cannot provide us with proper diagnostic x-rays because they only offer a standard radiographic unit. It is very difficult to properly x-ray avian species, especially songbirds. We would be able to chart better treatment protocols for our patients if we had an x-ray that was suitable for the types of patients we see.

Availability: Currently CWRS relies on the goodwill of the local veterinary clinic as well as the availability of their x-ray equipment. The animals of the veterinary clients take priority which can lead to life-threatening delays in procuring the information needed to make an accurate diagnosis of our wildlife patients. This then delays treatment.

Surgery:  X-rays are frequently used during the course of surgery to ensure proper alignment of broken bones, etc.  Without a digital x-ray onsite animal patients cannot be x-rayed until after any surgical procedure has been completed and the patient is stable enough to be transferred to a local veterinary clinic for x-rays.  The ability to x-ray patients during the course of surgery would improve surgical outcomes and ensure our patients have to undergo secondary surgeries as little as possible.   

The Calgary Wildlife Rehabilitation Society has found a bargain priced used portable digital x-ray machine. This type of unit rarely comes up for sale in such good condition and it's only because we are a not-for-profit charity that the seller has offered such a great price ($31 500). The typical cost for a used machine in this condition is $50 000. We currently have agreed to a lease to own, and have a 3 month grace period with no payments. In addition to the unit itself, other costs include 2 sets of lead gowns, gloves and thyroid protectors, dosimeters for staff taking x-rays and 5 year inspections. We have already raised $10 000 through the Power of One Foundation.

We are raising $25 000 to complete the purchase of this x-ray machine as well as all protective equipment required.  All donations will go directly to the purchase of the digital x-ray and protective gear for our staff. 

Thank-you for your generosity.  Your donation will directly help wildlife in need receive the treatment they deserve in a timely manner.www.calgarywildife.org


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Andrea Hunt 
Calgary, AB
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