can you take injured birds to the vets

Sources for help: In advance, find out who and where your nearest wildlife rehabilitators are, and keep their names and phone numbers handy. Then, when you find injured wildlife, you save precious time for yourself and the animal, and obtain help that much sooner. Click here for more information on how you can find a wildlife rehabilitator in Connecticut and New York. Some other sources for locating a rehabilitator include local police departments (dont use 911), animal control, dog wardens, vets, nature centers, your state department of environmental protection, or fish and game agency.

Keep in mind, wildlife is wild. Wild animals do not make good pets, due to their wild instincts, which become frustrated in captivity. Attempts to keep wild animals as pets are a form of cruelty. Most do not thrive, and suffer and die. Specialized training and knowledge, state and federal permits are required for persons caring for wildlife. Possession of wildlife without permits is illegal.

For your personal safety, do not attempt any rescue or handling of adult raccoons, fox, coyote, deer, water birds with long, pointy beaks, hawks, and owls.

Where birds thrive, people prosper. Help us transform local communities into places where birds flourish. Learn what you can do to nurture wildlife, nature, and conservation in Connecticut.

Through land stewardship, science, education, and advocacy, we work to preserve habitat and protect bird species that are of state, national, and global concern. Your gift can make a difference.

When you become a member of Greenwich Audubon Center, you are nurturing bird-friendly communities and a natural heritage for generations to come. Help us do great things.

Opinions expressed are those of the writer:

The authors’ opinions and views are their own, and they may not reflect the opinions, policies, or positions of Pet Health Network, IDEXX Laboratories, Inc., or all veterinarians. or its affiliates and partner companies.

What to Do If You Find Injured Wildlife

Always keep your hands away from animals by using towels or other barriers, or wear protective gloves. A soft towel placed over the animal can help to soothe it. If at all possible, carefully move the animal into an air-hole-equipped, escape-proof container with a broom or shovel.

The bird can be calmed by gently covering and catching it with a towel. Put the bird in a big paper grocery bag, cardboard box with flaps or a top, or container shoebox. Make sure the container you use has air holes in it. When placing the bird inside a bag, fold the top over and secure it with a staple or clothespins.

The caged animal or bird should be kept out of the way of curious pets and people in a warm, dark, and peaceful area. Resist the temptation to handle or show off the animal. Such care is exceedingly taxing and may even be lethal to the animal. Additionally, it can be dangerous if the animal has a parasite or disease that humans can contract, or if the terrified animal tries to defend itself out of fear. Since injured animals are frequently in shock, giving them additional warmth can be life-saving. This can be accomplished by inserting plastic bottles or jars filled with hot water and securely capped inside the container containing the animal, or by using a heating pad that has been turned on low and placed halfway beneath the container. Do not feed any food or liquid. Doing so can kill the animal. Just keep the animal warm and quiet.

Contact a wildlife rehabilitator. When bringing the animal to be rehabilitated, avoid smoking, turn down the radio, and have as little conversation as possible. Never put animals in the trunk of the car.

Preventing and Eliminating Hazards for Wildlife

Millions of songbirds are killed by window strikes, which happen alarmingly frequently during the fall bird migration. Trees and the sky are reflected by large glass surfaces like sliding doors and windows. This frequently leads birds to believe that there is no real barrier and they can pass through. When birds collide, their high speed can result in severe injuries, most commonly to the head, wing, or neck. After a few minutes or several hours, a few birds might be fortunate enough to only be stunned and be able to take off. In the event that a bird strikes a window, remains still on the ground, and is unable to fly upward, rescue and confine the bird before contacting a wildlife rehabilitator. It is extremely vulnerable to attack by hawks and cats, so do not leave it outside.

The next action would be to stop window strikes, which could be accomplished by placing a banner, decorative windsock, CDs, loose streamers, or mylar ribbons in front of the window or door. Mylar streamers or ribbons must be at least 3/4 of an inch wide and have a silver or gold side to reflect light intensely enough to deter birds. Place bird feeders away from windows and glass doors.

Fall brings more wildlife activity, and regrettably, when wildlife flies and strikes your car or darts into the road in front of you, some collisions are unavoidable. However, by adopting some preventative driving techniques, many collisions can be avoided.

Include quick scans of the roadsides ahead of you rather than maintaining your full attention fixed on the road. When driving on dark roads at night or in areas with a lot of vegetation alongside the road, exercise extra caution. Respect speed limits to increase the likelihood that you and animals won’t collide. When cars approach, animals that are in the road or about to cross it frequently get confused. Give the animal an extra moment to escape danger by slowing down and stopping. It might be a mother animal gathering food for her young.

Expect a deer or wild turkey to cross the road if you spot one there. Don’t forget to bring extra food because deer and turkeys frequently travel in groups. At night, deer freeze when headlights shine on them. Give them enough time to cross the road safely before you slow down and stop, then move slowly past that location. If a gull is in the road while you are driving in a gull-populated area, slow down, stop, and give it time to fly away. Roads are used by gulls to crack open shellfish, which they then immediately consume. They are hesitant to give up the food, move slowly to make room, and frequently get struck by irate motorists.

Dont let cat and dog companions roam outdoors. Every year, millions upon millions of songbirds and small mammals in North America perish as a result of roaming cats. They are the second most common reason for significant drops in a variety of songbird species. Unsupervised dogs do their share too. Cats do adapt to indoor life. Dogs enjoy playing and going for walks with their human companions more than they do when left alone outside because they are social animals. In addition, your pets will be safer and healthier since they won’t be hit by cars, fight with other animals, run the risk of contracting serious illnesses, parasites, poisoning, or becoming victims of cruelty. Your wallet will also benefit greatly (lower vet bills).

Properly dispose of toxic wastes e. g. paint, used motor oil, and chemicals. Never discard them in the ground or down storm or sink drains. Regularly check for leaks in motor vehicle fluids, as these can kill pets and wildlife. Trash should be cleared up, and leaks should be fixed.

Pick up trash, focusing on fishing line, styrofoam, plastic bags, balloons, 6-pack rings, and kite string. Recycle or dispose of properly. Avoid using pesticides and herbicides. There are safer alternatives.


What do I do with a wounded bird?

If you find a young bird (or any species of wildlife that seems sick, injured, or in trouble), usually the best thing to do is to leave it alone. Why? For one thing, it’s the law. In North America, it is illegal to disturb most wildlife species.

Will a vet take a bird?

Your vet will secure your bird in a towel, which allows for a safe and straightforward examination. Your pet will be physically examined from beak to claw (or talon), and your veterinarian will review your pet’s health history. If necessary, we will perform blood work and other diagnostic tests.

Should I put down an injured bird?

In some cases, it is easy to tell if a bird requires immediate euthanasia. The purpose is to ease their suffering when there is no hope at all – such as a bad trauma case with multiple fractures, badly broken beaks, leg amputations, etc.

What should I do if I find an injured bird in NJ?

Those who encounter such a situation should consult the List of NJ Wildlife Rehabilitators for the nearest wildlife rehabilitation center. If you wish to help out a wildlife rehabilitator, consider donating from the Wildlife Rehabilitators Wish List .