Sunday , 22 April 2018

Should Roscoe the Raccoon be Euthanized after Biting Heard Museum Employee?

By Nikki Darling, TSB Staff

While most raccoons that bite a citizen would immediately be euthanized and checked for rabies, Roscoe the raccoon of the Heard Natural Science Museum & Wildlife Sanctuary was lucky enough to have people fighting for his life.

On May 16th Roscoe bit a Heard staff member. But certain circumstances led the staff of the Heard, including the woman who was bitten, to argue against Roscoe being euthanized and fight against the city of McKinney.

Roscoe was a rescue animal and has been in captivity since 2009. For this reason he is up to date on rabies vaccination, making the chances of him being dangerous extremely low. He has also been safe from being exposed to other wild animal diseases that could warrant him as a threat. This argument has been used in the ongoing battle between the Heard and the city and has — for the time being — kept Roscoe alive.

The debate will continue on until later this summer, when a Collin County judge will make the final decision. But the staff and members of the Heard see no reason to euthanize the animal.

In my opinion, the risk of the animal biting someone else is now on the table, despite his currency on vaccinations. This time he bit an employee’s finger, but next time a guest — even a child — could be bitten in an area that could leave life-long scars or permanent damage.

If your pet dog were to seriously bite a neighbor, would you keep that dog around? The same goes for raccoons, who by nature are more vicious than house dogs. The risks of Roscoe biting and seriously injuring someone are much too high to consciously keep the raccoon around.

How do you feel about this issue?

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