I Found an Animal

Keeping any wildlife is illegal unless you have the proper licenses to do so. Call Fox Valley Wildlife Center at (847) 697-2880 x25 and a trained staff member will help you determine if the animal needs help and guide you through what to do next.


A baby animals best chance for survival is always with the parent. If you know or strongly suspect that the parent has been killed or can no longer care for the young, rehabilitation may be required.

If you find a baby animal that requires care, keep it in a warm, dark, quiet place and call a licensed wildlife rehabilitator immediately. Handle the baby the least amount possible and DO NOT FEED IT. Improper care, handling, and feeding can compromise the baby’s health, recovery and chances for eventual release. Wildlife at any age is severely stressed in a human’s care. What we see as comfort, such as holding and cuddling, they see as a life threatening situation. This stress can have serious impact on their health and can even be fatal.

Sick and Injured

Use caution when handling sick or injured wildlife. Animals can be aggressive when injured and frightened. Some animals can also carry disease that can be transferred to humans and pets. We advise keeping spare towels, gloves, and a container inside your vehicle to better assist the transportation of sick or injured wildlife to a licensed facility.

How to safely contain a wild animal for transport to a licensed wildlife rehabilitator:

  1. Find a suitable container (cardboard box, pet carrier). Line it with a towel or cloth. For potentially difficult or hard to handle wildlife, use a humane trap. If you plan to use a trap, call Fox Valley Wildlife Center at (847) 697-2880 x25 for guidance.
  2. Otherwise, throw a towel or a sheet over the animal so the he can’t see you, gently pick up the animal (wear gloves), and place in the container. You don’t need to remove the towel, but loosen it. Secure the container to make sure the animal cannot escape.
  3. Keep the animal in a warm, dark, quiet place. Do not offer food or water. Leave the animal alone.
  4. If you would like more information regarding the animal you find or if you are not sure what to do, call Fox Valley Wildlife Center at (847) 697-2880 x25.

Visit our Helpful Resources page to help you learn how to manage immediate and longer range concerns with wildlife.

What can I do to help wildlife?