Emu died of stress from chase, capture | TheUnion.com

Emu died of stress from chase, capture

A lost emu terrified by honking cars and an hour-long chase by police and animal control officers near the Raley’s shopping center last month died from stress shortly after.

“Everyone there was yelling, screaming and everything. The emu died of stress from everyone chasing it. It was dead when we loaded it into the truck,” said Ken Norton, supervisor of the Grass Valley Animal Shelter.

The incident has infuriated animal lover Manny Avila, who watched the incident and tried to help by throwing a scarf over the bird’s head to quiet it down.

“They tried roping it like a horse. It was a circus. That was straight-up cruelty, is what they did,” Avila said.

A tranquilizer dart did not slow down the emu. Attempts to lasso it didn’t work either. When the bird slipped on asphalt, the men tackled it and held its body and kicking legs to the ground, said Grass Valley Traffic Officer Brian Hooper.

Though the men who chased and finally captured the animal were inexperienced, there was no cruelty involved, Hooper said.

“We weren’t trying to hurt it. We were just trying to keep it safe and everyone else safe,” Hooper said.

Since the incident, no one has come forward as owners of the animal, Hooper said.

To contact Staff Writer Laura Brown,e-mail lbrown@theunion.com or call 477-4231.

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