Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Naturegraph and a Pet Deer

In Spring 1970 while driving near The Geysers, I picked up a fawn sitting beside the road with no mother deer around. About two days later he started dying, tongue hanging out, eyes bulging, panting heavily. Needing advice, I called Vinson Brown who ran Naturegraph Press outside of Healdsburg. He told me what vet to go to. Even though it was then illegal for him to treat wild animals, the vet took the fawn in, telling me most likely the mother abandoned him because he had encephalitis, that the fawn probably wouldn't live but he would give him antibiotics. However the fawn returned to full health, and we had him about two months before releasing him.

In gratitude to Vinson Brown for his help, I paid him a visit about 6 months later. Last month (Nov 2009) I found out Naturegraph is still publishing now relocated in Happy Camp CA. Vinson Brown died about 15 years ago, but his wife Barbara is still running the business, and when I ordered a few more books and told Barbara the story above, she related the following story to me:

They had a pet fawn also, and the Browns' daughter was considered by the fawn to be its mother, following her around everywhere. They raised the deer from infancy to grown lady, and years later when the daughter got married, the deer "stood by her side as bridesmaid at the wedding. Few brides have a lovely deer as their bridesmaid, clear down to wanting to have a bite of her boquet."

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