Found an injured or orphaned animal?

Hands holding baby morning dove

Whenever you find an injured or orphaned wild animal, call Wildlife Rehabilitation Center of Northern Utah (801-814-7888) or your local licensed wildlife rehabilitator to determine whether the animal actually needs help!


NEVER email or use Facebook--the very life you are trying to save counts on you calling us as SOON AS POSSIBLE--Understand that we receive 100-150 calls every day; be patient and keep trying--THANK YOU!


Some young animals may not need rescuing– please call first to determine  if an animal needs to be rescued. Please don’t take a healthy animal away from it's parents. 


  • If you found a raccoon or skunk--PLEASE read the information under "Found a Baby Raccoon or Skunk?" below--VERY IMPORTANT!

If the animal is obviously injured or in danger, without putting your safety at risk, contain the animal in a safe location and contact a rehabilitator. 


This handy flowchart for birds will help you determine whether to intervene in the case of young birds.


Click for the "I Found a Baby Bird, Now What?" flowchart. 


Click the link below for a list of licensed wildlife rehabilitators

Rehabilitating wildlife requires state and federal permits.  This is for the safety and well-being of the animals as well as caretakers.  

Utah Licensed Rehabilitators

What to do with the animal until you can get help.

  • Contact a licensed professional as soon as possible.  It is always best to get help quickly (hours not days).
  • Do not give the animal any food or water. Feeding an animal can create life threatening complications and an improper diet can result in injury or death. 
  • Place the animal in an appropriately-sized, secure box with a towel on the bottom.  Be certain there is sufficient air, but be careful not to poke large holes.  Animals will try to escape and if they can see you, it is terrifying to them. 
  • Cover the container with a towel or blanket--this helps to keep the animal quiet and calm--no peeking--"human predators" are scary to wildlife.
  • Keep the animal in a warm, dark, quiet place such as a spare bathroom or laundry room.  Young and injured animals often times have difficulty with thermoregulation. 
  • Leave the animal alone. Humans are their biggest predator and they know this.  Cuddling makes people feel better, but it is very stressful to wild animals--stress can kill.
  • Keep children and pets away.


Found a Baby Raccoon or Skunk?

"Cute as a Bug" isn't it?

First things first, most babies ARE NOT ABANDONED just because they are alone--it is very natural for mom to leave for long periods of time as she forages for food, but if people are disturbing the babies or are too near, she may not return causing the babies to become orphans--PLEASE, LEAVE THE BABIES ALONE!


Second, for your safety and knowledge, in the state of Utah it is illegal to interact with or take in wildlife, especially raccoons and skunks without specific licensing.  Utah will not even license Wildlife Rehabbers for raccoon or skunk rehabilitation. 


Raccoons can carry rabies and other transmittable diseases/parasites and with our neighbor Colorado seeing a rise in rabies, we can fully expect a rise in Utah as well should we not take proper steps to prevent its spread. 


DID YOU KNOW?  To "test" an animal for rabies, they must be killed first, so when you intervene in the life of a perfectly healthy baby raccoon (or skunk, or other mammal) you are opening the door for it to be killed in order to be tested--this is done for Public Safety reasons, so unless you see abnormal/erratic behavior in a wild animal, please just leave it alone and give it a chance to live a normal life.


SO, if you think you "LOVE" animals, then don't let your actions be the reason for having a healthy baby or adult killed -- when in doubt please call -- WRCNU is happy to help you determine the correct response to your animal/human interaction problems.

"21 People Exposed to Rabies", July 2018

Please read the Colorado Health Department notice to the right (click photo) .


DID YOU KNOW?  You do not have to be bitten to contract rabies from an infected animal, including domestic strays (cats/dogs) or exposed pets that are allowed out of doors--Rabies is a virus that is normally transmitted by saliva; it can be on the paws, fur, in the feces/urine, mucus membranes of the nose, eyes, etc. and may enter through a small cut, mouth, eyes, or other means.


If you've come in contact with a rabies infected animal you WILL require vaccination as the ONLY cure for this deadly disease.


Not all infected animals show signs and as previously stated, the only way to test an animal is to kill it first.


Again, for your safety and the animal's just LEAVE IT BE--THANK YOU!