It Takes a Village
From W.O.L.F. Staff Jillian Depperman
Interview with Alex McFarland, Member of Skye’s Medical Team
When we agreed to bring Skye to the sanctuary, we did not realize the impact that she would have on all of us at W.O.L.F. and on our supporters. We certainly could not have predicted that Skye would have all the medical issues she has faced. But we are immensely grateful for the remarkable team at Colorado State University Veterinary Teaching Hospital. It is because of them that Skye is able to enjoy this second chance at life. However, there are those at CSU for whom working with Skye was its own reward. Alex McFarland, who is a fourth-year veterinary student at the Veterinary Teaching Hospital, formed a deep bond with Skye during her time in the Critical Care Unit. Below, he explains some of his thoughts about his work with exotics and his connection with Skye.
We asked Alex how he became interested in exotic animals, which began in childhood.
Skye was the first wolf dog that Alex worked with medically, though he had worked with other wolves before under different circumstances. While genetically so similar to dogs, he says, wolves are behaviorally quite different.
When Skye first arrived in Colorado, we were under the impression that she was completely blind, and we hoped to have the Ophthalmology department examine her to see if we could restore her sight. As soon as veterinarians discovered the diaphragm hernia, however, that became the pressing priority. Skye had surgery the following day to correct this life-threatening issue. Shortly thereafter, Alex revisited the issue of her blindness.
His work with Skye aligns well with what Alex intends to do following his graduation in 2020. He hopes to continue to work with exotic animals in a zoo setting.
From all of us at W.O.L.F., we would like to extend our most sincere appreciation to Alex, as well as to the entire medical team that helped bring Skye home to us. She has an indomitable spirit; she simply refuses to give up despite the stacked odds against her. In her case, it took a village… She has the medical team who provided her with the care she needed, our wonderful supporters who generously provided the funds to pay for her care, and our sanctuary staff and volunteers who have given her the continued care that she needs. Skye is so fortunate to have everyone in her corner.