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Wallaby rehabilitated after used as bait in Alberta dog fighting ring: petting zoo

Click to play video: 'Wallaby survives being bait in Alberta dog fighting ring' Wallaby survives being bait in Alberta dog fighting ring
WATCH: An exotic animal rescued from a disturbing crime that could have killed him is now being rehabilitated at a Calgary petting zoo. As Jill Croteau reports, it's an extraordinary story of survival – Mar 5, 2021

Pablo is a wallaby. The exotic animal came from some very tortured beginnings.

He was used as bait in a brutal crime few animals survive. It’s believed he was forced into a dog fighting ring. Mike Sheppard and his wife Maureen own Cobb’s adventure park and petting zoo, they didn’t hesitate to take him in nearly two years ago.

Pablo. Jill Croteau/Global News

“It came from a drug house using him in dog fighting. That guy got arrested and Pablo along with other exotic animals were passed on to other people,” Mike said.

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Pablo was malnourished and needed a lot of vet care.

Read more: Spike in stolen dogs could point to underground fighting rings in Alberta: animal society (March 2019)

Click to play video: 'Spike in stolen dogs could point to underground fighting rings in Alberta: animal society' Spike in stolen dogs could point to underground fighting rings in Alberta: animal society
Spike in stolen dogs could point to underground fighting rings in Alberta: animal society – Mar 19, 2019

“He had lumps on his neck and a skin disorder. There were bite marks on him. They are shaved to teach dogs where to bite,” Mike said.

“It’s senseless for entertainment, gambling, whatever the reason — no animal deserves that.”

Maureen said it took time to earn Pablo’s trust.

Pablo. Jill Croteau/Global News
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“He would turn on you we had to lock him up and nobody could go near him he would attack you,” Mike said.

Staff and volunteers spent months working with him. Jordyn Lavender was one of them.

Dressing up Pablo. Courtesy: Cobb's Adventure Park

“It’s amazing. I had a lot of love for him when we first got him and he tugged on my heart strings knowing what he went through,” Lavender said. “To see him doing so well really means a lot.”

“We get attached to every single one and you see he’s just a lovely boy now,” Maureen said.

Pablo. Courtesy: Cobb's Adventure Park

 

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