TORONTO – The way Stephane Desgroseillers sees it, he had no choice.
When he and his friends spotted a moose calf by the side of the road Sunday, they just had to pick it up. And take it in their car. To Tim Hortons.
“She still had the umbilical cord and was still wet when I found her,” Desgroseillers says in a one-minute clip another Tims customer uploaded to Facebook. “The wolves would have got to her.”
Bystanders can be seen petting the calf outside the coffee shop.
Desgroseillers told a local Sudbury newspaper his friends spotted the female calf on the side of the road on Sunday.
He notified a local animal refuge group who then told him it was actually a missing orphaned moose that never showed up at the Wild At Heart Animal Refuge Centre in Lively, just outside Sudbury.
Desgroseillers was told to return the moose to the same spot he found it in hopes the mother would come back, but the calf kept following him.
He then picked it up and tried to return the animal to the refuge but unknowingly went to the wrong animal care facility.
Feeling he had few options, he ended up taking the animal home with him until he could return it himself to the right location the following day. He nicknamed her Ranger.
Wild at Heart officials said the calf’s mother was killed in a collision.
The animal is reportedly healthy and will remain at the refuge centre for at least a year before being released back into the wild.