What to do if you come across injured or orphaned wildlife:

CALL FIRST

If you encounter an animal that you believe needs help, first contact the Oakville & Milton Humane Society (OMHS).  We can help you determine whether an animal is injured or orphaned. It’s important to note how specific the needs of each animal are, so rescuing an animal by yourself could do more harm than good.

For example, many wildlife parents leave their young alone for long periods of time. Other wee animals, while tiny in size, might already be independent and able to survive. Too often, infant wildlife is picked up by well-meaning rescuers while the parent is near.  If you must handle a wild animal, never do it without protective clothing or gloves.

DO NOT FEED

The first 24 to 48 hours after a wild animal is found is the most critical.  Surprisingly, food is not the first necessity for the baby. They are usually cold and afraid. Providing a quiet environment and protection from the elements is important. Then connecting with the OMHS quickly can save their life.

The OMHS Emergency Service is available 24-hours a day, 7 days a week. Please call OMHS (905-845-1551) if you find an animal that: 

  • has broken bones or puncture wounds
  • has been in a dog or cat’s mouth or been hit by a car
  • is bleeding
  • has a dead parent nearby
  • is covered in fleas or other bugs

For more information about what to do when you find orphaned and injured animals, you can also visit Ontario Wildlife Rescue. There you can locate a wildlife rehabilitation centre in your area or a centre that specializes in a particular species. Under the law only authorized wildlife custodians can care for orphaned wildlife.   A Rehabilitator is trained to provide care for wildlife until they can be returned to the wild so let’s get the babies into their hands as soon as possible!

 

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