In two surgeries, Dr. Schirmer and orthopedic surgeon Dr. Evans amputated part of Jersey's left foot, then his right leg. Right after he recovered from anesthesia, Jersey was already pulling himself up
It has been a little over a week now since the surgeries, and this little fighter is recovering like a champ! He is in good spirits and has even started running around, using his tail as a leg
. Monkeys' adaptability will never cease to amaze me! We have Loopy with only one leg, Don without a tail, Joni who walks on her hands and balances with her tail, two blind monkeys and fourteen diabetic monkeys -- all living full 'monkey lives' here. And now we are fortunate to witness Jersey's strong will to live and the beginning of his remarkable recovery!
Jersey duty is 24/7, and we are taking turns keeping him occupied and safe. Even though he has completely stolen my heart, I know that humans are no substitute for monkey friends!
Jersey has one more surgery to reconstruct his left foot and then his fight will be psychological. For now, he is on medications to prevent further self-attacking. Once he is physically able to join other monkeys, he may completely stop self-attacking. Or, like some of the other monkeys here, he may need to stay on medication. Only time will tell. (You can help by making a donation
to help with Jersey's medical costs.)
Fortunately, our loyal supporters have practically come out of the woodwork to help with Jersey. Carla Haddix, DVM, long-time volunteer, is filling in until more staff are hired. Shannon, the husband of Kari's assistant Sara, is washing monkey food bowls and cutting produce. Our bookkeeper Elizabeth and her daughter Bri work in the monkey yard nearly every evening. Kathryn Quaas with Animal Warriors is here all week volunteering. Many of our sister sanctuaries, like Primate Rescue Center, Center for Great Apes, and the North American Primate Sanctuary Alliance, are sending help. Even Jersey's humans are helping out!
Jersey prefers the company of men for his one-on-one care, and we found two good ones. Chance French
is moving to Gainesville (see Chance's story below) and long-time supporter Claude Leasure
has practically put his own business on hold to help Jersey. Even with Chance and Claude, we are understaffed and hiring right now. If you can help out around the sanctuary for a few days or weeks (you can stay on-site), or are looking for a position working with monkeys in a sanctuary setting, please email us
or visit our opportunities
Monkey Hugs,Helene Goldson
Volunteer and Board Member
P.S. Jersey isn't our only special needs monkey right now. Murphy Brown
is in the clinic fighting ketoacidosis (a complication of diabetes), and Elizabeth
(little Gavin's mom) may have liver cancer. Please send healing, positive thoughts to them, because life is worth living!