I dont know where to start this since I am real upset and hurt. It began nearly four years ago when I found a baby fawn next to the road in the corner of my property. The mother had abandoned it along with its stillborn twin. It was near death, so I brought it in, cleaned it up, secured milk for it and nursed it back to health. It lived and then kind of adopted me and would play and tease me when it saw me around. It turned out to be a little buck and would roam around and forage in my and the neighbors fields, but always returned to greet me and tease me. I began to call him Butch, and he would come running when I called if he happened to be nearby.
The other day, a wildlife officer came by, noticed him, and told me it was against the law for me to have him. I explained that he was not penned up and came and went as he chose. The officer said he would have to take Butch anyway since I did not have a permit to have him and couldnt get one, or fine me $1,300.
This week the officer, Dave Harper, came back with another officer and shot him with a tranquilizer, blindfolded him, dragged him into the back of his truck, and hauled him out and dumped him somewhere along the Hovenweep road to starve.
I had my good friend of four years forcefully taken from me and the only home he has known, and dumped, late in the evening in the middle of the winter, in strange surroundings, with little to no good forage.
At 85 years of age, I am pretty devastated to lose an animal friend, for no good reason, that I had worked to save and that it had grown to appreciate what I had done for it. I just wanted to see that it had a good life to roam as it was intended, and it was, until the wildlife officer decided he wanted to enforce a law, as he interpreted it, that I didnt know about, just because he could.
Im not sure that the law even is right since Butch was not penned up, and he came and went as he pleased and didnt bother anybody. Other neighbors have deer doing the same on their places. I thought the wildlife people cared about and protected the wildlife, but callously dumping a semi-tame deer the way they did told me that was certainly not true and is actually animal cruelty.
The other thing it showed me is that the wildlife people certainly dont care about people, especially the seniors. The only thing they seem to care about is how much money they can get from selling licenses and enforcing cold-hearted laws! There are herds of deer out there competing for food to survive on, and the DOW wants to take a deer that has forage and add it to the numbers that dont have enough to eat? It doesnt make any sense at all. What has happened to good sense and us as a people?
Editors note: According to a Colorado Parks & Wildlife area wildlife manager, fawns are often falsely thought to be abandoned by their doe. There are people certified to rehabilitate fawns that are abandoned with the eventual goal of returning them to the wild, but it is illegal in Colorado to keep wild animals as pets. This particular deer was relocated to a place with plenty of sage brush, which is a common natural diet for deer in winter. Individuals who find an injured/abandoned wild animal should contact parks & wildlife.