the personal views, thoughts, and musings of donna d'errico

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Dear, Deer

While driving up my canyon road on my way home this morning, I caught a glimpse of a doe clambering off the edge of the road and into into the thicket. I only caught a quick glimpse as I drove by, but I instantly knew something was not right by the way she seemed to be crawling rather than walking. So, I doubled back as quickly as I could and drove very slowly, trying to remember the exact spot I passed by her. When I found her, I made another u-turn so that my car was on the same side of the road that she was on. The canyon road is a two-way road with no shoulder, so I stopped in the middle of the right lane and put my flashers on.

When I got out of my car and walked around to where she was, I could see that both of her back legs were shattered to bits. She kept struggling to stand and run away on legs that were no longer there. The sight of her had me in tears instantly, but I had to act very quickly to hold her still. All of her struggling and dragging of those shattered legs behind her was causing her to rip them to shreds. The bones were so crushed that her legs looked like floppy doll legs hanging off her hind end. It was awful and the most pitiful thing I had ever seen. She was panting and bleating, and clearly in massive pain. This had obviously just happened not a moment before I saw her struggling off the road ahead of me.

I waved frantically to a large pick-up truck that appeared, and asked the man to call someone to come out and help her. She was in shock and suffering. He immediately got on his phone and began dialing the local vets, wildlife rescues, and animal control. Another person stopped, then another. They all got out of their cars and came over to help. I asked one kind woman who stopped if she had a towel in her car that I could put over the doe's face to calm her, and she retrieved one from her car for the deer. I tried to check to see if the doe had any teats that would indicate that she had fawns nearby, but she was struggling and strong so I wasn't able to see.

A sheriff eventually happened along and called the situation in over his radio. I was so happy to see so many passers-by stopping and offering to help, and being so concerned and outraged that someone would commit a hit-and-run like that. It warmed my heart to see such love and concern from so many in this day and age.

In the end, the poor thing had to be put out of her misery. Her legs couldn't be saved.

To accidentally hit a deer that jumps out in front of your car, though unfortunate and sad, is not something anyone would judge you over. I have come close to that happening to me many a time out here where the deer are numerous and always jumping into the road. But to whoever it was that hit this doe this morning, and just kept on going without any concern for her whatsoever - not only did you commit a crime by doing what you did, you are a coward and should be ashamed of yourself.


  1. Proud of you D. . . there are so many people who would NOT have turned around. Do a fav-give a shout if you get a chance- have something I'd like to talk to you about. . . Jamie

  2. Karen Richmond/SCApril 22, 2010 at 8:23 AM

    I agree with Jamie, I am so very proud of you Donna. You are so kind and compassionate. People treat animals like they are of no consequence, and to see that someone cares enough to comfort this doe in her time of struggles just continues to prove my point of what an amazing woman you are.... Karen~

  3. About two weeks ago a dog ran out in front of my car. I kinda of clipped him, he tumbled and kept on running to the other side of the street, then turned and ran right back across my path and into a yard. I was stunned. I went down and turned around and searched and searched for the dog, but I never found it. It made me physically ill. What you did was kindness to one of God's creatures and tried to help it from being in pain and panic. Good for you. We should all take an example.

  4. You're such a wonderful person Donna! I'm a huge animal lover and help out at the local shelter where i live. I've adopted all three of my wonderful little pals. It breaks my heart to see an animal suffer. Last winter on my way back from the airport i saw a dog chained to a tree freezing and laying very cold on the wet snow under him. I walked up to the door and of course nobody answered so i took the situation in my control and called the local police. They were able to cut the chain and scoop the poor little dog up. It was around 5 degrees out and shame on the pets owner who did this. He must of been out there for a day or 2. The local Humane society took over and kept "Angel" safe and warm and i went everyday to check on him and i was going to adopt him but my friend fell in love with Angel(we named him) and she did adopt him and he's doing great today and loves people. The owners ended up getting a ticket and a day in court. It makes me sick how someone can hurt an animal.

  5. Donna,
    I just read the account of your airport scanning. I'm sorry you and your son had to go through that obvious exploitation.

  6. Well done Donna. Great example and courageous of you to flag down traffic in this day and age. You touched so many lives that day, including the deer's.