young female swamp wallaby was found
in the middle of a small country road, the young lady that found
her thought she had been hit by a car, unfortunately it was a case of Myopathy
me explain what Myopathy is.
in Macropods (being wallabies, pademelons and kangaroos) happens
when the animal is under extreme stress, as is the case when it
is being attacked or chased by a dog.
The animal does not have to be injured directly to develop rhabdomyolysis,
which is a disintegration of the muscle fibres. From within 24
hours up to a few weeks after the incident, the wallaby will show
stiffness and paralysis mainly in the hindquarters, progressing
to complete paralysis, it will also salivate excessively, death
will occur within 2-14 days after the stressful incident.
Usually we will not see an animal in this state, as it will go
somewhere quiet and out of sight to die.
It is natural for us to think that if the dog did not catch the
wallaby, no harm has been done, the dog had a good run, the wallaby
got away. As you have just read, the wallaby may have gotten away,
but it did not escape a painful and slow death.
is very unfortunate that this situation takes place on a regular
basis in the country, as it is avoidable, just by locking up your
dog at night when most Australian native animals are most active.
alert to what is taking place around you, specially at night,
and help our native animals survive in an ever diminishing natural
can be treated in very young pouch joey's if treated when the
stressful incident has just taken place. In adult macropods it
is too late by the time the animal is found, as was the
case with this Swamp wallaby
was approximately 12 months old.