Encounter With an Albino Deer

by DFS-Pet-Blog on May 18, 2010

**Guest post from Ellen B.**

We have several articles on Dr. Race Foster’s veterinarian advice and company announcements, so when given the opportunity ask him a few questions I went in a different direction and asked:

What was the most difficult or dangerous animal you ever treated?

Here’s Race’s answer…

Albino-DeerAn albino deer. It was back when I was still in veterinary school, and I was helping at the Foster and Smith Animal Hospital owned by my older brother, Rory, and Dr. Marty Smith. We received a call from the Northwoods Wildlife Center regarding an albino deer being injured. She had been hit by a car and her leg was hurt.

We had to anesthetize the wild deer in the woods so we could get her to the clinic and provide the care she needed. Back then, we didn’t have a dart gun. My job was to restrain the deer, while my partner (Marty) administered the anesthetic. This case was dangerous from the standpoint of getting kicked – and I did get kicked.  

Albino DeerIt took a few tries to give her the proper dose, but we got the job done. Marty and I took the albino deer back to the clinic where Marty performed surgery to repair a broken tibia bone in her leg.

Turned out, this deer was not only albino but she was also pregnant with an albino fawn. The deer was returned back to its original location in Boulder Junction, WI.

For more information about albino deer and the recessive gene that causes albinism, check out the Boulder Junction Chamber of Commerce website. We thank them for sharing their albino deer photos with us on this page.

Side Note: In our conversation, I discovered a little piece of “Dr. Race Foster trivia” that I found interesting: Race started working at his brother’s animal hospital at the age of 14. He worked as a “kennel boy” doing whatever needed to be done.

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{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

Adam May 18, 2010 at 8:21 am

That is so cool. How common are albino deer in the WI area. Can’t say I’ve ever seen one!

Ellen B. May 18, 2010 at 11:39 am

According to the Boulder Junction Chamber’s website, the chances of an albino deer are one in 20,000…pretty rare!

Christopher May 18, 2010 at 11:57 am

How odd, an albino deer…with an albino baby! I’m happy the surgery was a success insite of the kicking.
We enjoy reading your blog and your vet-office stories. (BTW got the Advantage from Drs F & S and I gotta say, as a cat, I’m pretty thrilled with the relief!) Mucho fleas in S Texas.

~Christopher

Ellen B. May 18, 2010 at 3:32 pm

Christopher – Albino deer are fascinating to us, even up here (northern WI) with all the wildlife. Re: Advantage – we love that product and in fact it is our doctor’s favorite – glad you agree!

glenda n kids October 30, 2011 at 4:54 pm

My husband, kids n I just saw an albino deer in Texas! It was beautiful to see. We feel so blessed to have seen the guy or gal. Love ur story!

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