Wild Animals

Contents of this page:

Duty to Help 

The Nature Conservation Act and the Animal Welfare Act both obligate you to help a sick, hurt or otherwise helpless wild animal. You may offer it temporary shelter, but you should not keep them in your care for an extended period of time. 

A clearly hurt animal or a lonely and weak baby animal might need help. Before capturing the animal, follow the animal and survey the situation first.

For example, a weak-looking baby bird’s or rabbit’s parent might be nearby. If a human scent clings to the baby animal, the parent might abandon it. Adult birds may pretend to be hurt to drive away a possible threat from the nest or the young.

A Safe Environment for Animals 

If you take in a wild animal for temporary care or capture one for transportation, remain calm. An alarmed animal may try to escape or defend itself by biting, pecking or scratching. Protect yourself with gloves or a towel. Be careful not to hurt the animal. For example, birds have hollow bones that can easily get damaged if treated roughly.

Create a safe, quiet, dark and warm environment for the animal. A cardboard box is a suitable temporary habitat. Place a towel, for example, on the bottom of the box and make sure that the box has proper ventilation with air holes. Offer water and possibly some suitable food to the animal.

If the animal does not calm down within an hour, please contact veterinary services.

Unfortunately, we are unable to come and pick up the animal. You must transport the animal to the veterinary office. Veterinary treatment of hurt wild animals is free of charge.

Veterinary Treatment of Wild Animals 

Wild animals will try to hide the symptoms of their sickness. A visibly sick animal that allows itself to be caught is seriously sick. Being caught and treated is highly stressful to wild animals. The stress might even cause them to pass away. 

A treatment assessment is conducted on the animal. If the animal can survive in nature, it will be treated and returned to nature. A follow-up treatment location is determined for endangered and rare species. 

If the animal cannot be treated and it would not survive in nature, unfortunately the most merciful option is euthanasia.

What to Do If You Find a Dead Wild Animal 

If you find a dead wild animal in your yard or nearby, you may bury it or place it in mixed waste. 

The Oulu office of the Finnish Food Authority examines wild animals. You may read more from the Finnish Food Authority website.