Darwin Animal Doctors


Roco and his instant paralysis

Santa Cruz, Galapagos

Some animals seem to go from being perfectly fine one day, to in terrible condition the next, with no visible explanation. So was the story of Roco.

Roco was brought into the clinic paralyzed – he was completely unable to walk. The strangest part was that this had happened from one day to the next. The previous day, Roco was his normal self, not exhibiting any strange symptoms, no illness or weakness – nothing. The next day, Roco was still bright and happy as usual – except that he couldn’t walk.

With no clear cause, the Doctors consulted a neurologist about the possible causes and treatments while the rest of the team attended to Roco with some extra TLC. The neurologist suggested tick paralysis as a possible cause and advised the team on possible treatments – emphasizing that attention and care were also an important part of the treatment. The Doctors looked at their team cuddling and petting Roco and knew that the second part of the treatment would be no problem at all…


Roco remained in the clinic for a few days as he received his medical and emotional treatment. After one day, Roco already seemed to be improving, able to move his legs somewhat. After this first sign of improvement, Roco slowly continued to get better – hour after hour was he able to stand for longer lengths of time on his feet. Soon, Roco even began to walk by himself.

“We were very happy that his strength was increasing and it was very nice to follow the improvement. And, of course, the volunteers liked cuddling him. They even let him sleep in their bed! :)” Dr. Stella told us.

As Roco regained his strength, he was able to return to his home. His family were so amazed by the result, and so happy to have their beloved furry family member home that they returned to the clinic with a bunch of bananas from the highlands as a gift.


Animals without access to veterinary care also means people without a way to help their loved ones. We ensure that there is somewhere to go when your four-legged family member gets sick. Help us continue to provide this essential service. Donate today.

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