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Government


Ohio women fights to save rescued deer from slaughter by state
Woman who rescued deer says it is cruel to kill them, state says they are just following the law
by WKSU's STATEHOUSE CORRESPONDENT JO INGLES


Reporter
Jo Ingles
 
It is illegal in Ohio to keep wild animals, including deer, as pets.
Courtesy of Ohio Department of Natural Resources
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In The Region:
A Central Ohio woman says she is fighting to keep two deer that she’s nursed back from the brink of death. She says the state wants to kill them.
LISTEN: INGLES ON DEER

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Mount Vernon resident Carol Deyo has always liked animals.  So when the former vet tech found an injured baby deer on her property, her instincts kicked in.

"He got run over by a sickle bar mower and had his rear leg and some of his undercarriage cut off," Deyo says. "So I called Ohio Department of Wildlife and they said there’s no more rescue on deer.  I said I could sew him up because I’ve been a surgical vet tech for years, but I said I don’t have anything to sew him with. [The girl who answered the phone] says you can sew him with tail hair out of a horse. Nothing was mentioned about destroying him or anything. So, I have horses so I took horse hair out of the horse and I cleaned him all out and sewed him together and he survived."

Rescuing a life
Deyo named the fawn Trooper and he has become her pet. He stays in her yard along with another baby deer she rescued, one that was sick, suffering from dehydration and seizures. It had crawled up under a vehicle in a nearby parking lot. She nursed it back to health too. 

Now both of these deer live on her property. They are domesticated. And Deyo says all was well and good until a state division of wildlife officer knocked on her door in November, saying an anonymous complaint had been filed and that the state would have to kill the deer under state law.

"They want to send a crew out to kill them and put them on the refuse pile in Columbus, because that’s their policy," Deyo says. "It’s a law that you can’t take the deer out of the wild but it’s their policy to kill them."

Law or compassion?
Deyo says she understands the state law is in place to keep people from removing deer from their natural wildlife habitat. But she says she did not take either of the deer out of the wild. One came onto her property and the other was found nearby in a parking lot.  

Deyo says if she had ordered those deer over the internet, she could have been given a permit to keep them for educational purposes.  She has an attorney who is working to get the state to issue permits for the deer but she says, so far, that is not happening.

"Could you imagine a baby deer laying there, it could take up to four or five days and it would be full of maggots?" Deyo says. "I mean there’s no compassion in this thing, that’s the worst."

Deyo is taking her fight to the public. She has started a Facebook page for the deer and is circulating an online petition among Ohioans that she plans to present to elected officials, asking them to issue permits for the deer. So far, more than 2000 people have signed the petition. 

The Ohio Department of Wildlife says Ohio law does not permit people to remove wild animals from the wild and keep them as pets. It goes on to advise anyone who finds an injured deer to call the department of wildlife.  That’s where Deyo says she called in the first place and was given instructions on how to care for the injured fawn.

Listener Comments:

I commend this vet tech for saving the deers' lives. When is the government going to recognize that animals are so much more intelligent than they are given credit for. Their first thought should not be death. Really, just sickening and shows no compassion.


Posted by: Sue (Victorville, CA) on August 14, 2013 4:08AM
The DNR certainly. Should care about the suffering of these animals and the care they have been given Especially since someone from DNR told her to put up a higher fence and she did. The public backs keeping those animals alive.


Posted by: June carter (Galena ohio) on August 13, 2013 8:08AM
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