A bobcat believed to have been hit by a car and treated for three weeks by the San Diego Humane Society's Project Wildlife team is enjoying its first full day back in the wild Thursday.
"Seeing this bobcat return to the wild is what it's all about for us," said Andy Blue, campus director of San Diego Humane Society's Ramona Wildlife Center. "Bobcats play an important ecological role in our region and we are glad to see this one back where he belongs. I am grateful to the citizen who found the bobcat, our Humane Officers, Veterinary Emergency Group and our staff for collaborating to save his life."
The adult male was released by Project Wildlife staff in Mission Trails Regional Park on Wednesday evening, not far from where he was initially found on Jan. 18. San Diego Humane Society's Humane Law Enforcement officers responded to a citizen's call and transported the injured cat to the Veterinary Emergency Group in Encinitas, where he was triaged and given supportive care overnight.
The bobcat arrived to SDHS on Jan. 19 with injuries indicating he had likely been hit by a car, a statement from the animal welfare organization read. Project Wildlife's veterinary team at the Pilar & Chuck Bahde Wildlife Center in San Diego immediately administered pain medication, performed radiographs and treated the bobcat for abrasions and minor contusions.
Once stabilized, the bobcat was moved the next day to the organization's Ramona Wildlife Center, where staff specialize in caring for native apex predators such as bobcats, coyotes and bears.
In Ramona, the team conducted additional medical tests including a dental exam, which included an extraction of the bobcat's broken tooth. According to SDHS, once healed and cleared medically, wildlife care specialists monitored the bobcat to ensure he was able to feed on his own and met the criteria for release.