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What to do if You Find an Abandoned Animal

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If you come across a sick, injured or abandoned animal do not remove it from its natural habitat. The Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry is advising the public keep your distance from wild animals. To determine if a young animal has been abandoned check it periodically over the course of 48 hours to see if it’s still around.

Removing a sick or injured wild animal from its natural habitat could cause more harm than good. Some species leave their offspring alone temporarily especially during the day. For example deer and cottontail rabbits spend most of the day away from their offspring to minimize the chance of predators finding them.

You cannot keep wildlife in captivity without approval from the MNRF. However you are able to temporarily possess the animal for up to 24 hours to transport it to a wildlife rehabilitator or veterinarian. It’s also important to keep in mind that volunteer operated wildlife rehabilitation centers have limited capacity to accept animals.

Contact your local Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry office to learn more about what you can do to help.

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