With spring on the way, your chance of spotting wildlife, particularly baby animals, is sure to go up. For the Rideau Valley Wildlife Sanctuary, a registered charity that treats and cares for injured or orphaned wild animals and turtles, spring brings many more visitors to their door. Still, that doesn’t mean all young animals left alone need rescuing.
“It’s important to determine if the animal really needs help. In some cases, it is normal for wild mothers to leave their young alone,” the sanctuary says. For instance, eastern cottontail rabbits and white-tailed deer will often leave their young alone for most of the day. Disturbing these animals can cause more harm than good.
So when should you try to help? The sanctuary provides a complete list of signs you should look for on their site, such as if the animal is cold and shivering or appears weak and unresponsive. They even provide detailed directions for what to do if you come across specific animals, from rabbits and squirrels to racoons and skunks.