What to Do When You Find an Injured Animal on Your Property

If you come across an animal that appears to be injured or in distress, it's important to take action. First, make sure that the animal actually needs help. If it's a wild animal, it may just be resting or taking a break. If it's a domestic animal, it may be lost and looking for its owner.

Once you're sure that the animal needs your help, call a wildlife rehabilitator to help you. If you can't find a rehabilitation center, try contacting an animal shelter, humane society, animal control agency, nature center, state wildlife agency, or veterinarian. There is no online list of wildlife rehabilitators. Call your local Game and Park Commission conservation officer to locate a licensed wildlife rehabilitation officer.

You can also try to contact Nebraska Wildlife Rehab or Wildlife Rescue Team. When approaching the animal, move slowly and talk to the animal in a reassuring way. An injured animal may be frightened and more likely to bite or scratch. Therefore, be careful when handling an animal in pain. If you feel that you are in danger of being injured, contact the animal control center, animal shelter, police officer, or veterinarian for help.

If this isn't possible, try to find someone to help you. Always contact a licensed wildlife rehabilitator as soon as possible to help you with the rescue process. Much of the care protocol depends on a wide variety of factors, such as age, species, condition, location, etc. For example, if you find a lost pet in Delaware, it will be transferred to the OAW's partner shelter, the Brandywine Valley SPCA (BVSPCA), located at 600 South Street in New Castle. The BVSPCA will hold the animal until the owner can be identified or until the animal can be placed in a new home. If you find native predatory wildlife in San Diego that needs help, call the Animal Fund's Wildlife Center at 760-789-2324.

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