Andrea Athie, from Ciudad Victoria, Mexico, immediately stopped her car when the vehicle in front of her hit what she thought was a dog. The motorist whose car had injured the animal kept on driving, so Athie ran out to help.
“[A]t the time I had no idea that it was a coyote, if not maybe I would not have approached the same way to help him,” she recounted in a Facebook post, along with several incredible photos, afterward. That post soon went viral.
Her misidentification of the animal, at the time, had emboldened her to approach the wounded creature. Yet, finding out what the animal really was (a coyote), she explained, a feeling of compassion took over; she allowed that feeling to guide her actions and did what came naturally.
When Athie approached him, she saw an expression of fear in the animal. Yet, as she wrote, “he just stood still and let me carry him and move him without resistance.” After taking him back to her car, she and some friends drove him to the animal hospital for treatment. They named him Pancho.
“Many will say that it is just an animal that does not feel, or is going to attack you, but they feel and recognize when [you] want to help them,” she wrote. What unfolded next only confirmed that sentiment; many people online began to follow Pancho’s treatment process with interest, many expressing great concern for his well-being.
Two weeks after the initial post, Athie shared an update on Twitter as to Pancho’s condition to let everyone know how it ended.
Sadly, she noted that Pancho had suffered an injury to two of his cervical vertebrae, and that made it impossible for him to move his hind legs or go to the bathroom.
She shared that at no time was Pancho ever aggressive, even as she and her friends attempted to rehabilitate him through daily exercise. And neither Athie nor her friends who helped in the rescue had any intention of keeping Pancho as a pet, as they recognized the fact that he was a wild animal.
So, after several veterinary surgeries and consultations, it became clear that Pancho’s injuries were beyond recovery, and in the end, it was decided that the most humane thing to do was put him down.
“Unfortunately yesterday night Pancho could no longer continue fighting with us,” she shared, “every day he was treated, everything was done humanly possible until the last moment.”
She informed those who had been following the rescue that Pancho would be cremated and the ashes kept in a biodegradable urn to be planted somewhere.
Although sad, Athie found some consolation in Pancho’s story from thousands of responses encouraging what she had tried to do. “[It] made me see that there are still thousands of people who are willing to help, who are not indifferent to the pain or suffering of another living being,” she shared.