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.
MEDFORD - You know curling from the Olympics. This week, master curlers from across the country are throwing their rocks in Medford. But this kind of curling you won’t see in Sochi, Mixed Doubles.
"Mixed doubles is fun. I really like it. It's really quick, everything happens quick and you're making a lot of precision shots because you don't have sweepers. I like that a lot and I like getting to play with Brady," said Cristin Clark.
FOREST COUNTY - Forest Count and Wisconsin Off-Road Vehicle Park Inc. (WORVPI) have found a 10,000 acre plot of land they would like to buy for an off-road park, according to WORVPI President John Schnorr.
Schnorr wouldn't discuss the exact location in Forest County, but said they would hope to buy the parcels by June 2014. Right now they’re contracting an engineering firm to evaluate the land.
"That's so environmental concerns can be met," Schnorr said. "We'll look at that as well as a pleasurable experience for an off-road visitor who is going to come up and spend hopefully a weeks vacation in Forest County."
Forest County leaders believe an off-road park could help bring more tourists to the area, and with that more money. The county has the fifth worst unemployment rate, 7.9 percent, in Wisconsin.
WORVPI used Ripon College to perform a feasibility study on the off-road park. It says the average off-roader will travel 300 miles to visit an off-road park. It also projected an off-road park could bring in nearly $28 million per year for Forest County businesses.
"It will take us some time to operate and open it up and develop the trails, the camp sites, the amenities inside," Schnorr said. "Realistically we could see an opening date of Memorial Day of 2015."
The park would host ATVs, motorcycles and other vehicles on off-road trails.
People can help fund the park by purchasing $150 charter membership passes. More than 30 have already been purchased. Schnorr says only 100 will be available.
"The pass will entitle the holder to a park pass, an annual park pass, for the first year when the park opens," Schnorr said. "It will give us some capital up front and afford them a discounted price down the road."
Even with the progress, Schnorr says the project is still in the early stages.
"If you are an optimist, you think a huge amount of progress has been made," Schnorr said. "But if you are a pessimist, not enough progress has been made."
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