A case of animal abuse took an even darker turn in Australia after police discovered a wounded kangaroo that had been shot through the abdomen with an arrow, was carrying a newborn joey in its pouch.
The kangaroo was found at University Hill in Bundoora, Australia on March 6. It was rushed to Lort Smith Animal Hospital for emergency surgery.
“It’s amazing that the arrow didn’t puncture her heart or lungs, and I was able to remove it quite easily,” veterinarian Tristan Rich told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation.
While doctors were fighting to save the kangaroo’s life, they made another discovery: a newborn joey – or baby kangaroo – inside “mom’s” pouch.
Now doctors are concerned that neither mother nor child will survive the ordeal.
“The joey is very young and now we’re concerned for his life also,” Rich told 9 News.
“If his mother doesn’t survive, he’ll become an orphan at only two months.”
For the mother kangaroo – named River by hospital staff – a long rehabilitation process awaits as she recovers from her very serious injury.
“We just have to hope that is strong enough to survive the rehabilitation process and doesn’t succumb to infection,” Rich told ABC.
As for the newborn – which weighs just 150 grams – the concern is the massive upheaval to its life, so soon after it was born.
“There’s a danger that she may pass away purely from the stress of being in captivity,” Rich said.
Police are hoping to find the person or persons responsible for shooting the kangaroo and have asked anyone with information to come forward.
© 2016 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.