What To Do

Step 1

Handle with care and caution.
  • Wear gloves and use thick towels, even with the smallest animal

  • NEVER touch an animal with bare hands

  • Use extra caution with skunks, fox, raccoons and bats

  • Get it into a secure box right away

Step 2

DO NOT feed or treat the wildlife.

Improper feeding can cause:

  • Bloat

  • Diarrhea

  • Aspiration Pneumonia

  • Death

Wildlife can stand a good amount of time without food or water.

Step 3

Keep the animal stress-free
  • Put the animal in a secure box

  • Place the box in a dark, quiet and warm place

  • Do not handle or keep looking at the animal

  • Stay very quiet and keep pets away

Step 4

Call us Immediately!

We run on a voicemail only system. Please leave a detailed voicemail with the animal, the size of the animal, the location found, how long you've had the animal and how you can be reached. You can also text us a photo for a faster response. 


Bats are state and federally protect wildlife because of their rapidly declining populations. Therefore, it is against the law to harm a bat or roost of bats even if they are in your home or place of business. We repeat, it is illegal to harm these animals and wildlife officers are cracking down on offenders because of the seriousness that bat species face. Note that some states do not allow the rehabilitation of bats. To learn how to safely remove a bat from an unwanted place, please visit http://batworld.org/what-to-do-if-you-found_a_bat/ to review options to protect both you and the bat. Do you hate those pesky mesquitos buzzing in your ears? Well bats can help you with that! Bats can eat 100% of their bodyweights in insects a day, including your nuisance bugs. Although records indicate that less than 0.5% of bats are rabies virus, it is still very important to remain cautious and never handle these animals with bare hands. Safety is a priority so only handle the bat with thick gloves or a blanket. You can also slide a piece of cardboard or plastic under the bat, being careful not to damage the wings. Bats are unable to take off from the ground so if you find a bat on the ground, do not assume automatically that it is ill or injured. If you believe a bat to be an orphaned pup, please give the mom the chance to retrieve her baby by leaving it in the location you found it. Do not leave it in direct sunlight as they will get sunburn and dehydrate. If the mom does not return in 12 hours, please begin to look for help by a licensed professional. You can place the pup under a known roost of bats (ie. The eaves of a house). Never attempt to feed, wash, treat or rehabilitate a bat.


If you find an injured or orphaned beaver, please contact CWCC immediately! Baby or juvenile beavers do not leave their den unless they have been orphaned. If they are extremely hungry, they will begin to follow people out of desperation. DO NOT feed the baby as this can lead to death! Do not place back in the water as this can lead to pneumonia or drowning. If you have found an injured or ill adult, be very mindful of their big powerful teeth. Adults are being forced out of the water with illness due to the decreasing water quality and habitat loss. Always use thick gloves and towels to handle these animals. Place them in a dark, quiet and stress-free environment in a ventilated box and call CWCC right away.

Birds, Raptors and Waterfowl

Luckily for CWCC, we have two amazing organizations that take care of the rehabilitation of these amazing creatures. For raptors in need, please contact the Carolina Raptor Center at 704-875-6521 or visit their website at https://www.carolinaraptorcenter.org/rescue/. For birds and waterfowl, please text Carolina Waterfowl Rescue at 704-684-9247, email hotline@cwrescue.org or visit them at http://cwrescue.org Please do not attempt to feed or treat these animals, keep in a dark, warm and quiet place until you receive further instruction.


Although our local Eastern Cottontail rabbits are very adorable, they DO NOT make good pets. It is important to not take these babies out of the wild unnecessarily, or as we call it “rob the nest”. If you see a nest of bunnies with no sight of mom, do not panic. Momma Cottontails do not stay around the nest during the day to avoid drawing predators to her babies. She is corpuscular, meaning she will be at her nest only at dawn and dusk to feed her little ones. The nest will consist of grass clippings, natural materials and mom’s warm underbelly fur. If the nest has been disturbed, simply put back the materials. How to check if mom is still coming for the babies? If you are concerned that something has happened to the mom, you can place thick string, dental floss, shoelaces, in a tic-tac-toe pattern across the nest. Check the nest after dawn or dusk to see if the strings have been disturbed. If they haven’t, contact CWCC. If the babies have been in a dog or cats mouth, they need antibiotics immediately, even if they do not seem injured. If the nest is flooded, they will need to come into care. If the babies look wrinkley, skinny or are covered with ants/bugs, please contact us. Adult rabbits are very susceptible to being hit by cars. If you have found an injured adult, please handle it very carefully with a towel, place it in a dark, warm, quiet box and contact us. It is important to note that adult’s back legs are extremely strong so be very mindful of their kicks and use your towel to secure them. Handle them as little as possible and as they are a prey animal and are very susceptible to stress related death. Keep dog, cats and children away from them. DO NOT feed or give the animal water but instead wait for further instructions.


Any chipmunk that is injured, orphaned or ill must receive treatment. These animals are underground nest dwellers so a baby above ground is never normal. Please use extreme caution when handling these animals as they are well known to bite out of fear.


Please never assume that a fawn is orphaned. Just like rabbits, does will leave their babies during the day in shrubs, bushes, tall grass to save them from predation. The fawns will rest their tiny legs while the mom forages for the day. If you find a fawn, keep your dog, children and any person away from the fawn. DO NOT FEED OR PET THE FAWN. Never attempt to chase or catch a fawn as they are extremely susceptible to stress and can cause capture myopathy which can lead to death. We repeat, DO NOT FEED the fawn! A fawn is in need of help IF AND ONLY IF the baby: 1. Is bleeding, has an open wound or a broken bone 2. It’s covered in fly eggs, they look like grains of rice 3. It is crying nonstop for hours on end 4. It appears weak AND is laying on its side If none of these are true, then the fawn is healthy and waiting for its mom to return. Please do not steal fawns away from their mothers. If one of the above is true, then the fawn needs help. DO NOT FEED IT OR CHASE IT. South Carolina list of fawn rehabbers: click here North Carolina list of fawn rehabbers: click here

Flying Squirrels

Flying squirrels mainly are encountered because of an attack by a predator including a dog or cat. Please contact us immediately if you have found a flying squirrel in need. Keep the animal in a warm, quiet, dark box. DO NOT attempt to feed or treat.


If you see a fox during the day, do not assume that it has rabies. Mom fox come out of their den during the day when they have pups. The increase in caloric demand goes up tenfold for a nursing mother. There are just not enough hours in the night for her to get all the nutrients she needs or to get the needed hunt in to feed her young, This means that these animals will be seen during the day, it is normal! They will also come out more during mating season. Fox are also loosing their homes at an exponential rate. Many fox out during the day are looking for a new place to make their den and call home. Fox do not pose a threat to humans or pets unless they are sick or protecting their young. If you see these critters acting unusual, such as charging at you, salivating, wobbly or falling over then contact your local animal control. DO NOT HANDLE these animals. Baby or juvenile fox will be orphaned when their parents are hit by a car, shot, poisoned or trapped. If you see a furless fox or patchy coat fox, CWCC is conducting a study on foxes with mange. With your help, mange is treatable and we can work together to save your neighborhood fox. Please call us to participate in our study and save this animal’s life. Like all wildlife, although the cases are rare, fox have the potential to carry the rabies virus, DO NOT HANDLE these animals.

Gray Squirrels

It is important to try to reunite uninjured baby squirrels. DO NOT feed the baby or give it water, the mom will not come back if the baby smells different. If the baby and mother is uninjured, place the babies in a box, clean milk jug with the side cut out, or a hanging basket with a soft lining; something where the mom can easily climb in and out. You can place this at the bottom of the tree, or even better, duct taped or nailed into the tree. They need an external heat source; you can use a warmed up water bottle with a cloth over (change every hour), a sock full of warmed up dry rice or beans(change every three hours) or a heatpad set on low under half of the box. Even if the babies are furred, they cannot regulate their temperature. If the tree is cut down and you know mom was not injured, leave the babies by the stump. Do not leave them in direct sunlight as they will burn and dehydrate. KEEP ALL DOGS, CATS, CHILDREN and YOURSELF INSIDE. Mom will not come back if she feels threatened. Observe from a distance. Mom will come back for up to 24 hours after. Monitor the babies for dehydration and that they are lively. If the mom has not gotten them and you think they can wait the night until the next morning, bring the squirrels inside at dark with an external heat source during the night; place the squirrels back outside at sunrise and leave for up to 24 hours. If she does not retrieve her babies, contact us. If a baby has been in a dog or cats mouth or seems injured, they need antibiotics so please contact us immediately. If you find an injured adult squirrel, handle it very carefully with thick gloves and/or a thick towel or simply scoop it into a box. Keep it dark, warm and quiet until your receive further instruction.


If you have found an injured or orphaned opossum, handle it carefully. Though they are known to freeze and “faint” when feeling threatened, all animals can bite when in times of extreme stress. If you have found a baby opossum that is smaller than a dollar bill(not including the tail), contact us. Mom opossum has many babies that she carries on her back, if one falls off, she keeps on walking without noticing and will not come back for the lost baby. If you have found a deceased opossum, always check to see if there are babies in the pouch. Opposums are the only marscupials in North America. Marscupials carry their babies in a pouch as they grow. The babies will be attached to the mom by her teat until they are big enough to climb on her back for a lift. If there are babies, very carefully and slowly pull the babies off of the mother's teat. They might try to grab onto her fur so pull them very gently off avoiding any trauma injury. Listen in the area found for any hissing sounds, them crying, as sometimes babies will be shook off from the trauma or wonder off in desperation. Place them in a box on a heatpad set on low under half the box. Keep in a dark and quiet place. Do NOT feed or handle and call us immediately. Handle any adult injured opposums with great care with a towel or gloves or slide into a box. Call us immediately for help. Opposums are very critical to our environment and a misunderstood creature. They help your family by killing many snakes including venomous snakes as they are resistant to their bites. They eat pesky ticks that can cause many diseases in you and your pets and eat bugs that can destroy your garden. We thank you for wanting to help out this amazing animal because it helps you every day!


If you find an injured or orphaned otter, please contact CWCC immediately! Baby or juvenile otters do not leave their den unless they have been orphaned. If they are extremely hungry, they will begin to follow people out of desperation. DO NOT feed the baby as this can lead to death! DO NOT place them back in the water as they can drown or get pneumonia. As will all animals, otters are known to be aggressive so handle the animal with extreme caution and as little as possible. Otters are very susceptible to the decrease in water quality and increase in toxic water pollution which can cause illness, displacement and death. If you find an orphaned, injured or ill otter, please call CWCC right away!


The NC box turtle population is declining due to habitat destruction, being hit by vehicles and the wrongful illegal pet trade. Please do not kidnap wild turtles to make as your pet. This is extremely illegal and they are insanely hard to take care of so in captivity, they will likely get sick and die. If you find an uninjured turtle trying to cross the road, simply assist the turtle by moving them to the other side in the direction that they were heading. Please refer to this video on assisting a snapping turtle across the road without injury https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lgd_B6iKPxU
DO NOT relocate them; they know where they want to go and the road just happens to be in their way. If the animal is found in an area that was recently placed under construction, you can put the box turtle in closet tree line of forest or by a water source if it is an aquatic turtle. DO NOT place box turtles in the water as they are the only terrestrial turtles in our area. If you find an injured turtle that has been hit by a vehicle, weed eater or lawnmower, chewed on by another animal, or seems ill (eyes swollen shut, large tumors on the head, snot bubbles from the nose), please contact us immediately. DO NOT place the animal in water or wash off any blood as their lungs may be exposed and they can drown. Place the turtle in a box with a towel underneath and bring inside to prevent maggots and bacterial growth. Please contact us immediately.


If you see a raccoon during the day, do not assume that it has rabies. Mother raccoon comes out during the day when they have babies to care for. The increase in caloric demand goes up tenfold for a nursing mother. There is just not enough hours in the night for her to get all the nutrients she needs or to get the needed hunt in to feed her young, This means that these animals will be seen during the day, it is normal! If you see these critters acting unusual, such as charging at you, salivating, wobbly or falling over then contact your local animal control. DO NOT HANDLE these animals. Raccoons are lazy animals and will take advantage of food scraps and pet food that is outdoors. If you do not want them dropping by for a free and easy meal, please remove the food source. Baby raccoons are often orphaned because of the removal of their mother by wildlife exterminating companies. There are many ways to humanely remove raccoons. Baby raccoons are VERY loud when they are hungry so removing their mom will not leave you a happy camper. Mother raccoons are great caretakers and will fight for her babies to come back to her until the very end, she will never abandon them. If the mother is in your attic or home, you can close up the hole and put the babies outside in a box for her to retrieve. If you have found a baby on the ground and it is not injured or covered in flies, keep an eye on it for the next 12 hours for the mother to come and retrieve. Like all animals, raccoons can catch the rabies virus. NEVER handle these animals unless you are using the proper protection like thick gloves and a thick towel to relocate the babies outside for the mother to retrieve.


If you see a skunk out during the day, this is not unusual and do not assume it has rabies. It may be foraging for their young. Skunks are not usually aggressive but will spray if feel threatened. If you see a skunk behaving unusual such as aggressive, stumbling, falling, walking in circles, or salivating excessively, call animal control. Skunk mothers are great caretakers of your yard and keep insects under control. If you have a family of skunks, they will move on and disperse once they are grown.

IT IS ILLEGAL to keep wildlife without the proper licensing. Wildlife officers are cracking down on anyone who illegally possesses wildlife in their home, even if you are trying to help the animal. Wildlife are not meant to be pets and need to be in the wild where they belong. All wildlife has the potential to carry serious disease so it is in the best interest of you, your family, and the animal to get it to a licensed wildlife professional immediately.  Please always contact us if you find an animal in need.

Call Us: (980) 389-1133   |   Business hours: (9am - 9pm)

This organization is a 501 (c)(3) tax-exempt charity organization under the North Carolina Nonprofit Corporation Act.