Shot fox must have been suffering for weeks

A fox has had to be put to sleep this afternoon after being rescued by East Sussex Wildlife Rescue & Ambulance Service due to the severity of its injuries and the resulting infection caused by being shot in the head by an air rifle.

Rescuers were called down to Pinewood Close, Hampden Park this afternoon after receiving reports of a poorly collapsed fox with flies buzzing round it. When rescuers arrived, the fox was able to stand and attempted to flee but rescuers were able to easily catch the fox with nets.

The fox was secured in a transport cage and driven back in one of WRAS’s ambulances to WRAS’s Casualty Centre on the A22 between Hailsham and Uckfield.

WRAS’s veterinary surgeon and Care Team assessed the fox under sedation and X-rays revealed an air gun pellet lodged in the mouth. The damaged caused and resulting infection which had built up over time meant the charity had no option but to save the fox from suffering and put the poor creature to sleep.

“The fox has probably been running around for weeks after being shot and slowly been getting worse” said WRAS founder and Operations Director Trevor Weeks MBE, “the poor creature must have been in pain and felt very unwell because of the infection. This is the worst part of our job to see a life wasted in this way because of such a deliberate act of cruelty”.

The incident has been reported to Sussex Police and East Sussex WRAS is urging anyone who is aware if any illegal shooting or poaching to report incidents to Sussex Police’s Rural Crime Team.

“We regularly see casualties admitted where we incidentally discover they have air pellets lodged somewhere in their body when X-rays are taken but clearly aren’t related to the reason for rescue” added Trevor, “This is just cruel and completely unnecessary.”

East Sussex WRAS is an award-winning community charity which relies on donations to help provide its valuable service.

Please consider donating to help support the organisation fight to save and protect our local wildlife.

Donations can be made online at www.wildlifeambulance.org.

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