What should I do if I find an orphaned baby squirrel on the ground?

Sometimes you can find squirrels when they are young with tiny eyes that are still closed or some may be older but still are not yet weaned. The orphan squirrel may be a result of a mother that was killed, removed or trapped. The nest could have fallen because of heavy rain, or high winds may destroy the nests. The baby squirrel can be found on the ground or down within the fallen nest. The mother may have wanted to remove the young one after it has fallen down but they were separated. When there has been predation when a crow or cat raided the nests, the babies may be orphaned.

When you find a baby, you should use a soft cloth in order to pick it up. Wrap the cloth over the entire body. You should wait for the baby to come down and then warm it using your hands. The mother squirrel may fail to recognize the baby if the temperature of that baby is not at a normal level. If you find more than one baby, you should keep them in a small box with soft cloths in order to warm them up. The bedding should not be raveling because the animals may be strangled by the holes or threads in worn out clothes. You can give them an external heat source by using a heating pad or a hot water bottle that is wrapped within a soft cloth in the box near the squirrels so that they may snuggle on it.

Check the baby to make sure it has no injury. If you find an injury, you should use a clean cloth with warm water to clean the dirt from the injured space. You should examine the squirrel in a quiet room without any pets or children around.

If you believe that the mother may still be around and it may be looking for them, you should keep them near the place where you got them but make sure that there is no harm that may come to them. However, you should not leave them out unmonitored or in the dark since they can be killed.

When the baby has lost the mother completely, you can take it to wildlife rehabilitators who have been licensed by the government, and they understand how they can raise the rescued baby so that it can be taken back to the wild when it grows up.

Go back to the Squirrels in the Attic home page.

What should I do if I find an orphaned baby squirrel on the ground?