NEWS

Black bear gets MRI from Toronto-area vets

02/03/2015 05:34 EST | Updated 04/05/2015 05:59 EDT
A four-year-old wild black bear is getting specialized medical treatment in the Toronto area, after an exceptionally long trip to the vet. 

Hope the bear was found paralyzed and emaciated in northern Ontario in December, and came to the attention of Mike McIntosh, who founded the Bear With Us sanctuary in Huntsville, Ont. 

McIntosh drove more than 3,000 kilometres to Fort Frances, Ont., and back to get the little bear to Mississauga-Oakville Veterinary Emergency Hospital. 

At her age, Hope should weigh about 180 pounds, but is only about 90 pounds. 

"She's paralyzed, she doesn't seem to have much feeling in the back end, no movement at all and limited movement with her front," McIntosh told CBC News. 

Veterinarians have ruled out poison and bullets and today placed Hope, under anesthetic, in a modified MRI machine. 

It's thought to be the first time a bear has had an MRI in Canada.

"We are looking for any disease that would be affecting the spinal cord — spinal compression, disk herniations,"  said veterinary neurologist Carolina Duque. 

A diagnosis is expected Wednesday. 

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