Injured seal could soon return to sea after two-year ordeal

Mrs Vicar the seal suffered a 7cm deep cut around her neck due to being trapped in a plastic ring fo

Mrs Vicar the seal suffered a 7cm deep cut around her neck due to being trapped in a plastic ring for nearly two and a half years. - Credit: RSPCA

A seal which spent more than two years with a plastic ring digging into its neck might finally be able to return to the sea soon.

Mrs Vicar – named for the white ring which caused a 7cm deep cut – was trapped in the plastic for around two and a half years, but kept evading capture until earlier this year.

Friends of Horsey Seals (FoHS) chairman Peter Ansell described her wounds as "absolutely horrific", adding he was "delighted to have been able to now leave her with the brilliant team at East Winch Wildlife Centre.

Mrs Vicar the seal suffered a 7cm deep cut around her neck due to being trapped in a plastic ring fo

Mrs Vicar the seal suffered a 7cm deep cut around her neck due to being trapped in a plastic ring for nearly two and a half years. - Credit: RSPCA

The RSPCA-run facility has been Mrs Vicar's home since she was caught in April, and is where she has been treated for her injuries and helped to recuperate from the damage done.

Centre manager Alison Charles said: "When I first saw how severe Mrs Vicar’s wounds were I was really worried she wouldn’t be able to make it.

"It was just so severe and infected and you could smell the infected flesh, it was just awful. When the ring was removed it then meant that her body released a huge swell of dangerous toxins, which she then had to fight off.

The plastic collar measured 2.5cm and was embedded in the seal's neck.

The plastic collar measured 2.5cm and was embedded in the seal's neck. - Credit: RSPCA


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"However each day there was a small sign of improvement and she started eating and her salt baths began to work on the infected wound.

"Now we have moved her into the outside pool where we hope the sunshine and the fresh air will continue to work to repair her wounds.

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"In the outside pool we also work to build up her strength and get her to swim from one end to the other to catch her fish. This enables her to stretch her neck to reach for the food, which is also very important for her recovery."

In the last two years, the RSPCA has received 8,092 calls about animals injured or caught up in litt

The deep cut on Mrs Vicar's neck was clear to see. - Credit: RSPCA

In a post on social media, FoHS said: "The nasty neck wound is healing nicely but the scarring will always be visible. She is being exercised daily from one end of the pool to the other and the movement in her neck is almost back to normal."

The rescue groups added it is "very probably that plans will be made to release her very soon".

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