Following a massive fire outbreak, which was recorded as the largest wildfire in the history of California, Officials has taken the responsibility of ensuring the safety of wounded bears that are now settling back into their natural wild homes after receiving unusual treatment for their wounded paws upon themselves.
The health condition of the female bear was confirmed to be perfect after careful observation of their movement through Los Padres National Forest northwest of Los Angeles using photos and GPS tracking devices.
The adult bears sustained third-degree burns from the December’s Thomas fire. Following a quality treatment, they were later released into the forest last month. A report has it that a mountain lion cub got treated also for signed paws.
A pregnant bear was one of the victims of the fire outbreak; however, the delivery of the baby is unconfirmed.
To ensure the bears do not end up suffering pains in the forest, veterinarians treating them used a fish skin to stitch their burned paws and wrapped them up with a bandage made of rice paper and cornhusks. The decision of the treatment method came from the result of studies made by officials on burn victims in Brazil that were treated using the skin of tilapia which was noticed to smoothen the skin and promote healing.
Though doctors have routinely grafted skin from humans and pigs, the availability of fish skin made it a better choice compared to other available options.
Jamie Peyton, chief of integrative medicine service at UC Davis’ veterinarian school spoke about how she observed the behavior of one of the bears that initially lied down continuously to spare her burned paws. She made it known that after applying the fish treatment; the bear could stand and walk around with other companions.
The outcome of the treatment supported more trial of fish skins for burns.
According to California Department of fish and wildlife in January, the affected mountain lion is too young to survive in the wild with the injury sustained. However, plans are in place to turn the cub over to care facility for lifelong confinement to ensure the safety of the cub.