Wild animals are not pets, Va.’s wildlife resources reminds

Wild animals are not pets, Va.’s wildlife resources reminds
Deer, courtesy of the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries (Source: Pixabay)

RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) - The Department of Wildlife Resources is reminding Virginians to leave wildlife animals alone, even it is injured or presumed to be orphaned.

Several individuals have been injured by a white-tail deer that became accustomed to people in captivity.

“This can lead to serious injuries to both people and domestic pets as the animal grows,” stated a release from the department. “White-tailed deer naturally become more aggressive during the fall breeding season, when they can cause serious and even life threatening injuries if held in captivity or provoked.”

Anyone who sees an approachable or sick wild animal should report it to the wildlife conflict help line at 1-855-571-9003, 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Concerned citizens often pick up animals that they think are orphaned. Wild animals rarely abandon their young, but they do leave them alone for long periods of time.

It is illegal to raise wild animals in captivity in Virginia. Wildlife rehabilitators are authorized to care for injured or orphaned wildlife on a short term basis before releasing them.

With even the best professional care possible, the survival rate of rehabilitated fawns and other animals is low.

The best advice, according to wildlife services, is to keep it wild.

Copyright 2020 WWBT. All rights reserved.