Our newest 2016 black bear cub, nicknamed Fergus Bear, had to return to the UT College of Veterinary Medicine when Curator Janet noticed a small amount of bloody secretion on one of his towels.  His right front leg appeared a bit swollen.  After contacting the UTCVM, she took him back to the vet school (in the middle of the night) where he was examined and treated.  Dr. Sullivan was waiting for her.

Janet and Fergus

Curator Janet held Fergus while Dr. Sullivan examined him.

Note Janet’s heavy gloves.  Even at his young age and small size, those claws can do serious damage to thin human skin.  Dr. Sullivan found that Fergus had an eruption near the surface of the skin in his front right armpit.  It was speculated that the eruption was the result of an old wound that had healed and therefore was not apparent during his initial examination on April 28.

Dr. Sullivan examines

Dr. Sullivan diagnosed the problem.

Dr. Sullivan shaved some fur around the eruption site, then drained the wound and sutured it.  X-rays showed no broken bones, and the sutures will dissolve.  This photo shows how very small Fergus Bear is in comparison to humans.  However, the good news is that he had already gained a half a pound since he was admitted to ABR!

Dr. Sullivan

Dr. Sullivan drained fluid from the eruption site and sutured it.

Curator Janet took Fergus back to ABR with a prescription for antibiotics.  She returned the little cub to his pen in The Cub Nursery.


Back at ABR, Fergus had a quick snack.

It didn’t take long for the tired little cub to fall asleep.

Fergus sleeps

Fergus sleeping with his stuffed toys.

ABR is very grateful to the wonderful vets at UTCVM for being there when we need them.  We have given them a lot of experience with bear cubs during the past year, and they always come through for us and the bears.