British Wildlife Helpline

First Aid in Emergencies

The most common domestic emergencies fall into these main groups:
    Cat victims - 
small birds and animals caught, played with and bitten
    Dog victims -
baby mammals dug out from nests (rabbit, badger, fox, hedgehog) or caught in a chase
- tiny fox cubs, squirrels, hedgehogs in gardens, chicks left in nests or fallen to the ground
    Traffic casualties  - hedgehogs, foxes, squirrels, birds at the side of the road

Small birds and animals
Get them into a safe place; a cardboard box, a bucket - any container that can be closed and ventilated.
Put sheets of kitchen roll, torn up newspaper or an old tea towel in the box.
Even tiny animals can give you a nip when they are frightened, so pick them up in a small cloth or wearing gloves.
Can you see any obvious blood or injuries? Check carefully, without manhandling the casualty.
Place in the box, cover with the lid or a cloth tied over the top.
Make a few small air holes in the cardboard box, a cloth cover will have air gaps in the fabric.
Put the box in a quiet room away from pets and children.

Adult Bird with no obvious wounds or blood
Leave in the dark box for 2 - 3 hours, or if found late in the day, leave until early the next morning.
Check after this time by listening for sounds.
Birds that have been caught but are uninjured can be heard moving around.
Take the container outside and cautiously open a corner to check the condition of the bird
If it is lively, take the box to a shrub or tree and open the top to see if it will fly away.
If it can't fly, it will need to be checked by experts so take it to a rescue centre.
If you can't go straight away, put a small heavy pot of water in the box and some appropriate food.
For details of who eats what, see:  Bird Foods

Mouse with no obvious wounds or blood
Make a secure container from a plastic box, bucket etc. and make sure it has a secure, ventilated lid.
Put a cardboard toilet roll or kitchen roll inner tube inside, with several torn up sheets of soft paper.
In a jam jar lid or similar small container, put a small bit of apple or banana, a few currants and flakes of cereal.
In another tiny lid put a screwed up piece of kitchen roll that has been soaked in water and wrung out so it is fairly wet.
Put the food and water at the side of the container then add the casualty to the are with the paper.
Leave in a quiet room for 2 - 3 hours or overnight if found late in the evening.
Carefully lift a corner of lid and check for droppings and see if the food has been eaten.
If the mouse is lively and eating, it can be released into a thick hedge, compost heap or wood pile in the garden.
Take the container to the safe spot, make sure no cats are about and remove the lid.
Gently tip the box on its side so the opening is sheltered from view and let the mouse leave on its own.

Obvious injury or blood
Leave in the darkened box while you find the nearest rescue centre or vet.
Transport the casualty as gently and quietly as possible.

For more details see:    First Aid for Birds
                                    First Aid for Mammals
                                    First Aid for Amphibians
                                    First Aid for Reptiles

If you can't get to a rescue centre straight away, clean wounds by washing away any surface dirt and
cleaning the area with dilute saline solution or better still, Hypercal solution.
Hypercal solution:
4 drops Hypercal tincture
1 teaspoon warm water
Mix well and apply to the injury with clean lint or cotton wool.

Hypercal tincture is a combination of Hypericum and Calendula plant extracts.  Hypericum is an effective pain
remedy and Calendula is excellent at promoting healing.  It can be used on people, too and is a valuable addition
to the First Aid kit. It can be obtained from any homoeopathic pharmacy and lasts for years if kept in a cool, dark
place away from strong chemicals.

Saline solution: 
Half a pint of warm, boiled water
Half a teaspoon of salt
Stir to dissolve and use to clean any scratches or cuts.

First Aid for Birds

First Aid for Mammals

First Aid for Amphibians

First Aid for Reptiles

Please refer to the Homoeopathic Treatments section
for help in treating common conditions

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