THIS is the baby seal which had to be put down after being snatched from a beach and carried home in a plastic bag.
According to an official report, a woman carried the harbour seal pup home after seeing it alone on a beach in Westport, Washington state
But the woman, who assumed the pup had been abandoned, had no idea how to care for the tragic animal, which was barely alive after being taken to the woman’s home in a plastic bag.
The woman contacted her local Westport Aquarium for help after realising what she had done, but by the time marine biologists arrived at her house it was too late
Experts from the aquarium turned up at the house to find the seal barely breathing on her decking and, although it was alive, it was in an “extremely lethargic” state.
Aquarium director Marc Myrsell said: “Usually these animals will snap and struggle to get away if you try to approach them, but this pup was so lethargic.
“Putting him in the carrier to take him to a centre was like picking up a sleeping human baby
He, along with officials from the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, had hoped that the seal could be returned to the beach, where it could make a recovery.
But after its ordeal, the pup was “so unresponsive, and so much time had gone by” that they had no choice but to put it down.
The incident happened in May, but was only brought to light by a statement from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration this week.
Kristin Wilkinson, of the NOAA, said: “The decision to euthanize an animal is one that we do not take lightly at all.”
But she added that the seal’s chances of survival were so low that they had no other option.