Emergency care for injured animals

If you’ve found an injured or orphaned bird or native animal, you need to:

  • Keep it safe and comfortable
  • Find your nearest Native Animal Rescue support vet. The vets will ensure the animal receives the right treatment right away. There is no charge and Native Animal Rescue can collect the animal once it receives first aid.
  • If you can’t take the animal to a vet, call the Department of Parks and Wildlife 24 hour Wildcare Helpline on (08) 9474 9055.

Where possible please do the following:

  • Remember that your safety and welfare are paramount. Make sure it is safe before attempting to rescue a native animal. Look out for sharp claws and beaks; they are wild animals and will often seek to defend themselves. Consider wearing gloves and eye protection (sunglasses).
  • Where possible get someone to help you.
  • Be prepared. Keep a towel, box/carry container, large empty drink bottle and hand cleaner in your car.
  • Make sure the animal you are helping actually needs your care. Often birds that appear to be orphaned may just be waiting for a parent to return from foraging.
  • Do not feed or give water to the animal. The wrong feed can cause serious problems and some birds do not drink water.
  • Stress is a killer. Handle the animal as little as possible, get it into a suitable container as soon as possible and do it as quietly as possible. Temporary confinement could be a cardboard box, a tied off pillowcase or hessian sack, or a covered laundry basket.
  • In cold weather, fill an empty drink bottle with hot water, wrap in towel and place with animal to provide warmth.
  • In hot weather, use an air-conditioned car for transport.
  • Do not carry the animal in your lap in the car. This practice is dangerous for you as well as being stressful and dangerous for the animal.
  • Contact Native Animal Rescue for advice. They can be contacted on (08) 9249 3434 and are available to assist seven days a week.

Animals may harbor diseases that are transferable to humans, so wash your hands and your clothes after close contact.

Glove Box Guide for Injured Native Wildlife

What do you do if you find an injured native animal? Who should you call for assistance?  

Download and print the Glove Box Guide for Injured Native Wildlife(PDF, 201KB) (PDF 2MB), or pick one up from any City of Swan Library, and place it in the glove box of your car. Then you will always have this information on-hand when you’re on the road.