While most people would agree that sloths are one of the cutest animals, many are not aware of the dangers these precious creatures face on a daily basis. Organizations like The Sloth Institute (TSI) in Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica know far too well the constant threats sloths face, which is why they are dedicated to the education, research, and conservation of these animals.
Sloths may be slow, but The Sloth Institute workers have to move fast in order to save as many lives as possible. Recently, they received not one, but two rescue calls in the middle of the night!
A newborn sloth was discovered with burns covering her fragile body. While no one knows what caused the burns, it is clear that she was separated from her mother, since baby sloths hang on to their mothers for the first six months of their life.
Caretakers were able to stabilize the baby and treated her with fluids to fight dehydration.
Minutes later, they received a call about a two-toed sloth that was attacked by a dog, leaving her with a severe eye injury that needed immediate surgery. Dog attacks are a common danger for sloths in Costa Rica due to the large stray dog population.
Both the baby and two-toed sloth were transported to the Toucan Rescue Ranch to recover at their critical care facility.
Sloths in Costa Rica are increasingly becoming victims of human encroachment. Notably, they are frequently torn from their homes due to deforestation and the illegal pet trade. Thanks to organizations like TSI, however, these innocent animals have a fighting chance.
To learn more about The Sloth Institute, adopt a sloth, or make a donation to their amazing work, click here.
Remember, if you ever come across a wild animal in distress, please contact a professional wildlife rehabilitator before stepping in. Click here for a list of a few who might help.
All image source: The Sloth Institute/Facebook