703-691-2131 TTY 711
4500 West Ox Road
Fairfax, VA 22030
Dr. Katherine Edwards
Wildlife Management Specialist

Injured and Orphaned Wildlife

Injured Wildlife -- Fairfax County Animal Protection Police

 The Fairfax County Animal Protection Police respond to wildlife calls for injured, sick, or aggressive animals. Seriously injured or aggressive wildlife will be humanely euthanized. Contact the Animal Protection Police through the police non-emergency line at (703) 691-2131.

What is wildlife rehabilitation?

Wildlife rehabilitators provide professional care to sick, injured, orphaned and “kidnapped” wildlife. Wildlife rehabilitators are dedicated in their efforts to ensure comprehensive and humane care. The goal is to return healthy wild animals to their natural habitat.

nursing squirrelOwl with cast

Wildlife rehabilitators are required to have a valid Virginia permit. Information on how to become a certified wildlife rehabilitator OR to contact a certified wildlife rehabilitator.

How do you know when and how to assist wildlife?

It is important to recognize the species you are attempting to rescue and its species-specific ecology and behavior. In many instances, “orphaned wildlife” are not actually orphaned, abandoned, or in distress. Most commonly kidnapped young animals are:

  • Birds (fledglings have feathers and open eyes, unable to fully fly yet)
  • Deer (fawns left unattended by their mother during daylight)
  • Rabbits (young rabbits left unattended by their mother during the daylight)
  • Turtles (Independent upon hatching from egg)

Visit Virginia Department of Wildlife Resources for more information.


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