RHINELANDER - Most pet owners probably can't imagine abandoning an animal. But what if giving up your pet seems to be the only option?
Removing all of the quills on this lab mix cost about $200. That's probably why her owner left her at the front door of the Oneida County Humane Society.
A volunteer found her there about two weeks ago, with quills stuck on her face, paws, and down her throat.
"We took her directly to the vet, and she had immediate surgery to remove them," said director Bria Swartout. "We were told by a couple of the vet centers that they did receive a call about 45 minutes after she showed up at our door of a family inquiring how much it would cost to remove porcupine quills, and they stated they could not afford that."
This dog did get the care she needed, and donations covered some of it.
But abandoning your pet and relying on the humane society aren't the only options.
"We understand that it's hard when you have unexpected vet bills, but always ask your vet if there's other payment options, if they're willing to work with you," Swartout said. "There's Care Credit out there, it's an opportunity to get a credit card for vet bills and other medical issues. There's different opportunities out there, asking family, friends to help you with these things. It's always unfortunate when a family has to lose a pet because they can't afford to do any cares on them."
The lab mix is up for adoption. Swartout guesses she's about a year old, but that's all she knows about her, since she was abandoned.
If you're interested in adopting her, call the Oneida County Humane Society at 715-362-5992.
PINE RIVER - Firefighters in Pine River had a tough day Saturday. They battled a house fire Friday night.
Crews didn't finish cleaning up the scene until 3:30 Saturday morning. Then they got called to a second fire in the afternoon.
The first fire happened at 9:12 p.m. The Lincoln County Dispatch Center got a call about a possible structure fire on County Highway WW in the Town of Pine River. That's east of Merrill, but when the Pine River Department got there, the house was in flames.
MADISON - A team of students from the University of Wisconsin, Madison, is conducting research on foxes and coyotes in hopes of learning how the animals and humans can peacefully coexist.
Forest and wildlife associate professor David Drake and his students are humanely trapping the animals, running tests, then fitting them with tracking devices. The goal is to learn about traveling patterns, diseases the animals might have, and how they interact with other animals and humans.
Drake says foxes and coyotes are moving into areas where people are living. And if that continues, and the animals lose their fear of humans, they could become aggressive in extreme cases.
The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources says residents should stay a safe distance from foxes or coyotes, and shouldn't feed them.
WAUSAU - Enrollment for health coverage will end soon. That's why healthcare providers participated in "Super Saturday".
Bridge Clinic in Wausau welcomed people to sign up for health insurance options Saturday.
The Open Enrollment deadline is February 15th. If you don't sign up before then, it could cost you $325 or more depending on your income.
"We recommend just make an informed choice. Don't just let it lapse and get the penalty, be surprised with a penalty later on. Come in, make an informed choice. There are health care options," said Bridge Community Health Clinic Executive Director Laura Scudiere.
NORTHWOODS - The U.S. Forest Service will hire thousands of temporary workers this spring. Leaders at the Chequamegon Nicolet Forest Service want to hire more than 50 temporary employees to work during summer. They're looking for people with diverse backgrounds and plenty of experience.
ST. GERMAIN - Bikinis and snowmobiles don't typically mix. Except, when you're at the St. Germain Bikini Run.
The event draws a huge crowd every year and it raised thousands of dollars for charity.
"We started with six girls and maybe $8000 seven years ago. Now, we're up to 33 girls today and more than $50,000," says Mark Hiller, the St. Germain Radar Run race director. "Every year it just grows, and grows."
MILWAUKEE - A winter storm warning will go into effect in the Milwaukee area and far southern Wisconsin on Saturday night â€" and the National Weather Service says as much as 10 inches of snow could fall in Kenosha County by early Monday.
Snow is forecast to begin falling late Saturday and continue all day Sunday. Lake-effect snow is expected to combine with a low pressure system from the south to drive up snowfall totals in far southeast Wisconsin. Milwaukee could see up to 9 inches.
Blowing and drifting snow is expected and winds could gust to over 30 mph, making travel dangerous.
Other parts of the state, including Sheboygan, Dodge, and Waukesha counties, will be under a winter weather advisory starting Saturday night. Snow accumulations could reach 4 to 7 inches.
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