Check out our new hours. Most DCHS and Wildlife Center services are by appointment only, including reuniting lost animals, surrendering a pet, wildlife rehabilitation, and more. Adoption visits are first-come, first-served. We recommend checking our current waitlist prior to your visit.

Jul 11, 2022

A Busy Year at DCHS's Wildlife Center

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The Wildlife Program Manager at Dane County Humane Society's Wildlife Center gives an update on the year so far.

We’re mid-way through the year and summer season at Dane County Humane Society’s Wildlife Center (DCHSWC), and wow – it’s been busy! Staff, interns, and volunteers have been working hard to care for hundreds of sick or injured wildlife patients. Amidst yet another season with heavy zoonotic disease outbreaks, namely the recent Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI), we continue to persevere and help the public and animals to the best of our abilities. Thank you to all who contribute or assist in this effort.

At the end of June 2022, 218 wild patients were active and in rehabilitation at our facility, and 292 other individual animals had either been successfully released or stabilized/transferred to other rehabilitation partners since the start of the year. A few favorite patients included four young red foxes, three young blue jays, six hooded mergansers, a snowy owl, and three downy woodpecker fledglings (with a cage all to themselves). Five hundred or so odd patients may not seem like much, but typical DCHS wildlife admission numbers in the first half of the year range from about 1,200 to 2,200 animals. Then, this volume increases to approximately 3,000 – 4,000 by the end of the year.

Our goal as wildlife rehabilitators is to release at least half of our intakes, knowing that many of those animals are admitted in critical condition, often unable to be saved (regardless of how hard we may try). The highest number of wild animals arrive between April 15 and October 15 each year, and if you’re interested, check out the table below to see how many animals came in during those months over the last seven years!

We are only able to perform this life-saving work because of help from members of our community: volunteers who donate their time, individuals who support the mission, and those who donate funds. Unexpected challenges this year have required more money for biosecurity equipment, tests, and protective gear, all of which had to be purchased to keep personnel safe from disease transmission between wildlife and humans. The generosity we’ve seen through matching gifts has gone a long way and is greatly appreciated, such as those from the Werndli Charitible Trust – these help to offset rising costs and allow us to help more animals.

Jackie Sandberg is the Wildlife Program Manager at DCHS's Wildlife Center.

Admissions from mid-April to mid-October annually at DCHS's Wildlife Center from 2014-2021.

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Dec 2nd, 2022

You Made Our Hearts Soar This #GivingTuesday

We are blown away by your gratitude this #GivingTuesday. Together, we raised over $108,000 for pets, barnyard animals, and wildlife in our community!

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Nov 29th, 2022

From Rough Past to New Beginning Thanks to You

Thanks to your generous support, DCHS can address immediate dental and medical issues for animals like Eddie.

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Nov 29th, 2022

You Helped This Green Heron Soar

Thanks to the support of incredible community members like you, DCHS’s wildlife rehabilitators nursed this green heron back to health.

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Nov 26th, 2022

Helping Puppies Be Their Goofy Selves

When puppies like Zak become sick, DCHS can quickly diagnose and treat them thanks to generous supporters like you.

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Nov 21st, 2022

You’re Giving Pretzel His Second Chance

When a puppy needed immediate help for his broken hip, DCHS could jump into action thanks to compassionate supporters like you.

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Nov 1st, 2022

Senior Pets: Aged to Perfection

November is Adopt a Senior Pet Month. In honor of this special month, we look at some of the benefits of bringing home a senior companion animal.

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