Found an injured animal

If you have found injured, orphaned, or oiled wildlife please call us at 403-946-2361 for assistance.


snowy1Since 1993, the Alberta Institute for Wildlife Conservation (AIWC) has been a champion for the rehabilitation of injured, orphaned, and oiled wildlife. Accredited through the Alberta Veterinary Medical Association (ABVMA), AIWC serves the needs of Alberta’s diverse wildlife in Calgary and southern Alberta.

Before handling wildlife, please call us to determine whether or not the animal is truly injured or orphaned. If it is in distress, we can provide guidance so you can safely secure the animal. We will then do our best to make arrangements to have the animal brought to our centre for care. We rely solely on volunteer rescue drivers to collect wildlife in need.

Once animals arrive at AIWC they are fully examined to determine the extent of their injuries. Further testing is often required, such as blood and/or fecal sampling, and radiograph diagnostics. With the completion of our surgical suite in 2009, patients are no longer transported to an off-site clinic for procedures, which greatly reduces their stress levels.

At the clinic, our staff and volunteers provide treatment and supportive care to the wildlife patients. Each patient’s diet varies, being as close as possible to its natural diet. In the case of orphaned animals, they must be taught to forage or hunt for their own food as they develop.

As an animal progresses, gaining strength and injuries healing, it will be moved into larger enclosures and finally be moved into an outdoor enclosure. When housed outside, the animal can properly prepare for release back into the wild by conditioning its body and acclimatizing to the weather.

Once an animal is strong enough, volunteers often get the opportunity to release the animal back into its natural habitat. Animals are returned to where they were found, unless it is not safe to do. If the animal cannot be returned, an appropriate habitat will be chosen to provide each animal with the greatest chance of survival.

Wildlife are not pets. If you find orphaned, oiled, or injured wildlife, do not keep them and try and raise or help them yourself. 

PSA: Wildlife Are Not Pets.

Found an orphaned animal?

Please call our wildlife hotline at 403-946-2361 to ensure the animal you have found is truly orphaned. Many animals are mistaken for orphans, and as a result are needlessly separated from their parents.

Read more about baby wildlife (click links to see info):