What should I do with an injured or orphaned animal?
At Dobbs Park Nature Center, we LOVE wildlife! However, we are not licensed, trained, or equipped to carry out true rehabilitation. We do have references for a number of trained and licensed rehabilitators in the area, and can refer you to the appropriate person.
Keep in mind, though, that young animals that appear to be abandoned may not be so at all. For instance, young birds often hop out of their nest well before they are ready for flight. This process is called "fledging", and although you may not see the mother, she is very likely close by, keeping an eye on her little one. Rabbits and deer also leave their young unattended for long periods, returning only long enough to feed the babies. So just because you don't see mom, it doesn't mean she's not there.
Of course, in the case of severe injury, an animal may need medical care. We also have contact information for vets in the area who are willing to take in wild animals for treatment and release. Give us a call and we'll pair you up with the right person.
If you see an uninjured animal in the road, it is best to simply move it to the side of the road where it was headed, so that it is out of harm's way. Remember, most of the time, an animal is much better off exactly where you found it than in the care of even the most skilled rehabilitator.
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