More than 70% of the howler monkeys rescued at Refuge for Wildlife are injured due to unsafe power distribution equipment. It is a very sad fact that most cannot survive the gruesome wounds caused by electrocution. Almost half are found dead at the scene or, following a comprehensive veterinary assessment, are euthanized due to the severity of their injuries. Of the monkeys brought to the clinic, approximately two-thirds succumb to their terrible injuries.

He ended up being the fastest
and most active infant in the nursery.

monkey rescue costa rica

Owen is one of the monkeys in our care who defied the odds. His injuries were severe and needed extensive veterinary care. He required several amputations to save his life. His left leg was damaged beyond repair and septicemia due to necrotic tissue was a big concern. Several severely damaged fingers on both hands were also amputated. Owen had a large gaping wound that was several centimeters wide and deep on his right hip, where the electrical current had exited his body. He had electrical burns on his face, stomach and tail that were also very bad. With the added high risk of septic shock, severe dehydration or kidney failure, he required intensive care and exceptional dedication from the veterinary staff involved.

After months of treatment at Refuge for Wildlife and several critical moments where we thought we might lose him, Owen had fully recovered! He slowly learned to climb again without the use of his left leg; although he was a little wobbly at first, it didn’t take him long to get the hang of it. Once Owen was out of the clinic, he really started to shine. He ended up being the fastest and most active infant in the nursery and spent entire days chasing the other orphans and wrestling.

It’s now been two years since the devastating accident that almost claimed Owen’s life. He and the other monkeys in his age group are next in line to be released. Owen has met every milestone and moved through our five-step program, learning essential life skills required to survive in the forest. But he still has to pass the most difficult assessment yet — our veterinary team must ensure that he is fit and able to survive in the wild. Not all monkeys in our monkey rescue rehabilitation program are able to be released, but it is our greatest hope that Owen will be one of them.

How to Help:

Visit our Refuge for Wildlife website for details about options for charitable financial support. You can also learn about our Stop the Shocks program, book an educational visit or volunteer to help us out.

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