SCARBOROUGH — Celine Lowell, a nurse at Pine Point Animal Hospital, said that on March 7, she found an harp seal surfaced on Pine Point Beach.

Walking her dog along the beach, Lowell said that she saw the animal and checked — without touching — to see if it was still alive. Fortunately, she said, it was, but it was eating sand, a sign of stress.

A passerby had been touching the animal, she said, and that is not what one should do when encountering a stranded marine animal, as it can cause more harm than good.

When she called local animal control officials, she was told that there was nothing that could be done, but Lowell said that this wasn’t a good enough answer for her.

“I’m a vet and when I see an animal in trouble I help,” she said.

Lowell ended up calling the Marine Mammals of Maine, she said, who were able to provide the necessary care for the animal.

Lynda Doughty, the executive director of MMoME, said that the stranded adult Harp Seal was relocated to a rehabilitation center in Bath.

MMoME, a nonprofit, helps stranded animals from Kittery to Rockland, she said. If anyone finds a stranded animal, call the MMoME hotline at 1-800-532-9551.

If anyone encounters a stranded marine animal, Lowell said, “Don’t touch (the animal). It can stress the animal, and please leash your dog if you have one.”

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