How to Help an Injured Animal

HOW TO HELP AN INJURED ANIMAL

If you find an injured or orphaned animal there are steps you will want to take (and a few things you will want to avoid). Read more about the species you found below.

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Birds of Prey

Birds of Prey Restraint & Temporary Care

  • They can grab with their beaks but it does not usually hurt.
  • Talons are very sharp and can cause serious injury. Direct contact with the talons should be avoided at all costs.
  • Use an appropriate-sized towel to gently restrain around the wings. Take care not to squeeze the body. Birds must be able to move their chests in order to breathe.
  • Place the bird in a carrier that already has air holes.
  • Place the carrier in a quiet, dark place that is warm and dry.
  • Do not feed or water unless we have advised you to do so.
  • Transport to a rehabilitator as soon as possible.

Songbirds

Songbird Restraint & Temporary Care

  • They can bite but it does not usually hurt.
  • Use an appropriate-sized towel to gently restrain around the wings. Take care not to squeeze the body. Birds must be able to move their chests in order to breathe.
  • Place the bird in a carrier that already has air holes.
  • Place the carrier in a quiet, dark place that is warm and dry.
  • Do not feed or water unless we have advised you to do so.
  • Transport to a rehabilitator as soon as possible.

Ducks, Geese, and Waterfowl

Waterfowl Restraint & Temporary Care

  • They may grab you with their beaks but it does not usually hurt.
  • If the wing has been injured at least a week, the wing does not touch the ground, and/or the bird currently lives near the water (allowing access to food) please leave the bird alone and do not attempt to rescue.
  • A new wing injury or other injuries often require rescue.
  • You will need a large towel or blanket and possibly the assistance of one additional person. Carefully approach the bird and gently restrain by placing the towel around the wings. Take care not to squeeze the body. Birds must be able to move their chests in order to breathe.
  • A carrier with air holes should be placed nearby. Place the bird in the carrier
  • Place the carrier with the bird in a quiet, dark place that is warm and dry.
  • Do not feed or water unless we have advised you to do so.
  • Transport to a rehabilitator as soon as possible.

 

Mammals

Mammal Restraint & Temporary Care

  • Some animals may carry rabies, which may be transmitted to humans through a bite or contact with saliva. Do not restrain or capture juvenile or adult foxes, bobcats, beavers, coyotes, opossums, groundhogs, deer (without spots), or other mammals unless a licensed wildlife professional has advised you to do so.
  • These animals may bite so take care to avoid the face and mouth should you come in contact with them. If you are bitten, please contact your physician for advice.
  • If you have been advised by us to do so, use an appropriate-sized towel or blanket to gently restrain. Place the animal in a carrier that already has air holes.
  • Place the carrier in a quiet, dark place that is warm and dry.
  • Do not feed or water unless we have advised you to do so.
  • Transport to a rehabilitator as soon as possible.

Orphaned Wildlife


 

Reptiles & Amphibians

Restraint & Temporary Care for Reptiles & Amphibians

  • These animals may bite so please avoid contact with the head and mouth.
  • Use a towel to gently restrain. Place the animal in a carrier with air holes.
  • Place the carrier in a quiet, dark place that is warm and dry.
  • Do not feed or water unless we have advised you to do so.
  • Transport to a rehabilitator as soon as possible.

Thanks for learning about how to take care of orphaned or injured wildlife.

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