I have seen many deer since leaving the state and traveling around the country. While driving in Oregon, one early morning we saw a family of deer nibbling on leaves. We saw deer in Wyoming and South Dakota everywhere we went. The only state on our trip I remember not seeing deer is Louisiana. We've seen more deer in the last year than I could ever count.
We've also seen more dead deer than I can count. I remember exactly when and where we were when we all saw our first dead deer. We were camping in Tennessee for Thanksgiving 2012. We woke up to take the dogs out for a walk when we noticed a deer on the back of a truck parked at a camping spot a few spaces down from us. Obviously, the person had just returned to the campsite from hunting. It was interesting and sad to see. The girls didn't really know what to think of it. On a drive from Tennessee to Alabama we saw numerous deer dead on the side of the freeway. I've seen two dead deer near our house. One was headless, the other was being eaten by turkey vultures. And recently, while splashing the monster truck around in the mud we stumbled upon what we can only assume was a deer ribcage. Most of the dead deer didn't really bother me. Maybe it's because I didn't have to watch them die. Maybe it's because I notice the dead animal and quickly look away.
That all changed on Friday. I was traumatized by what I witnessed while leaving our house!
We were heading to the Post Office and Rob spotted a deer across the street, behind a bush. The deer looked frightened. We were watching it, wishing it to hop back into the woods and get away from the road. The deer took a few steps into the street then he quickly jumped back on the sidewalk. The look in his eyes showed how confused and terrified he was. I thought he'd go back into the trees but he didn't. Right as two cars were driving by he jumped back into the street. This time he was hit by a car, a cop car. The car only hit the deer's back end, the deer hobbled to the side of the road and for a brief second we thought the deer was going to just "shake it off" and be okay. He wasn't and it was terrible to watch! The deer collapsed in the grass next to the sidewalk and started to die, at least that's what I assume was happening. I had to look away many times because it made me want to cry. The deer's back leg flopped around a few times before he stopped moving. We finally pulled out of the driveway and went to the post office. There was nothing we could do and the cop was handling the situation so we had to finish our errands.
I was thankful that C couldn't figure out what was happening in the backseat. I was also so glad the girls' bus hadn't just dropped them off, it would have been so awful for a bus full of kids to witness that. It was an hour before the bus would drop the kids off.
When we came back home we noticed the deer was gone, the cop car was parked at the nearby veterinary clinic. While I know the deer probably died, I'd like to think the Veterinarian fixed up that deer and released him back into the wild.