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Duzzy - Sea Lion with Pneumonia

     

A sea lion sick with pneumonia receives medical care and a second chance at life.

February 21, 2013 - update

Duzzy is now back in the ocean after a month stay at our hospital. Beachgoers enjoyed seeing him waddle his way to the water's edge at Rodeo Beach in Sausalito on February 20. View the slideshow and video below to see Duzzy's return to the wild.

Duzzy Slide01

Have you met California sea lion Duzzy?
Photo by Ingrid Overgard © The Marine Mammal Center.

Duzzy Slide02

Duzzy was malnourished and diagnosed with pneumonia when he arrived at the Center in January. Photo by Ingrid Overgard © The Marine Mammal Center.

Duzzy Slide03

Duzzy gets weighed before his release - he gained 95 pounds during his stay at the Center. Photo by Ingrid Overgard © The Marine Mammal Center.

Duzzy Slide04

After treatment at the Center, Duzzy is ready to return to the ocean!
Photo by Ingrid Overgard © The Marine Mammal Center.

Duzzy Slide05

On February 20, 2013, Duzzy is released at Rodeo Beach.
Photo by Ingrid Overgard © The Marine Mammal Center.

Duzzy Slide06

Volunteers guide Duzzy after his carrier is opened and he is released.
Photo by Ingrid Overgard © The Marine Mammal Center.

Duzzy Slide07

Duzzy is back where he belongs!
Photo by Ingrid Overgard © The Marine Mammal Center.

Duzzy Slide08

It is a moving experience to see a healthy sea lion return to the ocean.
Photo by Ingrid Overgard © The Marine Mammal Center.

Duzzy Slide09

Happy Trails Duzzy! Plan your visit to The Marine Mammal Center.
Photo by Ingrid Overgard © The Marine Mammal Center.


February 12, 2013 - update

We received good news about Duzzy! He had a second set of x-rays and the radiology report confirms that his lungs are now clear of pneumonia! We are optimistic he will go home to the wild soon. Meanwhile he still needs rest and to gain a bit more weigh at our hospital. He is currently eating 18.5 lbs of fish a day - make a donation to feed duzzy!

Scroll down for Duzzy's full story to date and a slideshow of his x-rays...


February 8, 2013

Duzzy, a wild California sea lion, didn't look healthy when rescuers from The Marine Mammal Center first found him on January 19, 2013.
Duzzy didn't look healthy when rescuers first found him on January 19, 2013.
© Petra Mottishaw. The Marine Mammal Center.



When a 230 lb sea lion is lying in the sand allowing people to approach him, it’s a sure sign that he doesn’t feel well. That’s just how rescuers from The Marine Mammal Center found Duzzy at Marina State Beach on January 19, 2013. When he was brought to the Center’s hospital, it was apparent that he was also severely underweight, as his spine and other bones were visible.

Center veterinarians performed an initial exam and learned that Duzzy's lungs were very congested. In fact, the lack of breath sounds was so severe, they questioned whether the stethoscope was working correctly!

Duzzy was immediately prescribed a strong antibiotic to combat bacterial pneumonia, but in order to make sure he didn’t have other serious problems, full body x-rays, an ultrasound, and blood tests were ordered.

Duzzy X-ray
Duzzy's X-ray confirms that he is suffering from pneumonia.
© Ingrid Overgard, The Marine Mammal Center

 

We are happy to report that Duzzy tolerated the anesthesia necessary for the x-ray procedure very well. He is eating and slowly getting stronger while the antibiotics are taking care of the pneumonia.

Duzzy, sea lion, marine mammal center
Veterinarians at The Marine Mammal Center used diagnostic tools to learn why Duzzy was ill. He had pneumonia.
© Ingrid Overgard - The Marine Mammal Center




We are hopeful that he will make a full recovery and be able to return to his ocean home soon.


Related:

Learn about California sea lions

Read a science paper about a particularly rare pneumonia in sea lions

Abstract: Although pneumonia and pleuritis have previously commonly been observed in marine mammals, their association with pure cultures of a zoonotic bacteria, K. pneumoniae HMV phenotype, has not. This report provides further evidence of the role marine mammals play as sentinels of health risks to humans from coastal waters.

 
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