So, you just found a baby squirrel. What now?
The first thing to do is take a deep breath, relax, and don’t panic! Squirrels are extremely resilient little creatures and can survive alone in the wild with no help from humans. But do baby squirrels carry diseases?
However, if you have found an abandoned baby squirrel, it’s not going to be able to fend for itself right away. This is why it’s so important for you to step up and help these little guys out. But helping a baby squirrel may look different than you think.
Today, we’re going to talk about how you can really play the role of a hero to a baby squirrel safely. But in order to most effectively help a baby squirrel, you need to understand a bit about these animals. Keep reading!
What Are Squirrels And Do Baby Squirrels Carry Diseases?
There are two common types of squirrels in the United States including the tree squirrel and the ground squirrel.
Squirrels are rodents in the family Sciuridae, which includes chipmunks, marmots, groundhogs, and prairie dogs. Squirrels are members of the family Sciuridae. There are more than 200 species of squirrels in the world. In North America, there are two main types of squirrels: tree squirrels and ground squirrels. Tree squirrels live in trees and ground squirrels live on the ground.
The squirrels you’re probably thinking of when looking into do baby squirrels carry diseases are the small, bushy-tailed rodents that can be found in almost every part of the world. Although they have a reputation for being destructive pests, squirrels are actually useful animals that help to control insects and other pests.
There are two common types of squirrels in the United States including the gray squirrel and the red squirrel. Both species live in trees and eat nuts, seeds, fruits, and other plants. They also eat insects and bird eggs when they can get to them.
Squirrels are active during the day and sleep at night in nests made of leaves or other soft material. They build their nests high up in trees where they feel safe from predators like raccoons and other animals that might want to eat them or their young.
Do baby squirrels carry diseases? Not usually, even though squirrels live in family groups called colonies. A colony may contain as many as 20 squirrels but usually only contains between two and five squirrels per tree. Squirrels live together because it’s safer for them than living alone or with just one or two other squirrels in an area where there are lots of predators around looking for food like hawks, eagles, or owls.
Most squirrels can mate twice per year: once in the spring and once in the fall. Male squirrels do not provide any parental care for their young, so mother squirrels leave their nests shortly after giving birth to ensure they have enough food to survive while they nurse their babies. This means it’s not uncommon to come across a nest of baby squirrels without their mother nearby, but more on this later.
Some female squirrels will build nests out of twigs and leaves while other females will nest inside trees or bushes where they sleep at night with their young close by their side. The number of babies born per litter varies depending on the type of squirrel but it can range from two to seven offspring per litter.
Asking do baby squirrels carry diseases is a good question, especially because they can look so strange when they are first born. Baby squirrels are born naked with their eyes closed and no fur on their body so they look like little rats at first! They start growing hair within a few weeks of birth, however, so they don’t look like naked rats for long! In no time at all, they soon like smaller versions of their adult counterparts.
But what are squirrels like as parents, and do baby squirrels carry diseases?
Female squirrels do spend a lot of time with their young, and they’re also very protective of them. Mother squirrels will build nests inside hollow trees or stumps to give birth and raise their babies in the spring and summer months. If a female has two litters in one season, she may only build one nest per litter. She usually gives birth to two or three babies at once, although it’s possible for a litter to be as small as one or as large as seven, as we mentioned above.
Do baby squirrels carry diseases? Not usually. However, baby squirrels are pretty helpless after birth and they truly do rely on their mothers for survival. Squirrels are born after a gestation period of about 41 days. At birth, they are blind and unable to eat solid food for about two weeks. Young squirrels stay with their mothers until they reach about 8 weeks old.
So, Do Baby Squirrels Carry Diseases?
Baby squirrels don’t generally carry serious diseases, but they can carry some illnesses that can make people sick.
Do baby squirrels carry diseases?
Squirrels are a common sight around parks and gardens. They have adapted to urban life and have learned to live side by side with humans. Although some people are not comfortable with the idea of having a squirrel in their backyard, the truth is that these animals can be really quite fun to observe from afar.
But what if you find a baby squirrel that needs your help? Is it safe? Do baby squirrels carry diseases?
Asking do baby squirrels carry diseases is a great question, but the answer is not so black and white. In fact, the answer to do baby squirrels carry diseases it’s more of a yes and no.
You see, baby squirrels do not carry any diseases themselves, but they are often infected with fleas, lice, and mites which can be transferred to people if they are picked up by humans and brought into their homes.
Outside of these potential parasites, the answer do baby squirrels carry diseases is more of a no. You see, baby squirrels aren’t as dangerous as adults and they don’t carry diseases as adult squirrels do. When they are babies, they are completely dependent on their mothers for protection and care. If they are abandoned by their mothers or if they fall out of their nest, they can become sick very quickly.
What Diseases Do Adult Squirrels Carry?
Adult squirrels carry fleas and ticks which can spread diseases like typhus or Lyme disease to humans if you come into contact with them. Squirrels can also carry other diseases like tularemia, plague, and ringworm.
The good news is that when asking do baby squirrels carry diseases, you can rest assured they do not carry rabies, which is usually one of the most common concerns for people considering handling baby squirrels.
Still, even though we know the answer to do baby squirrels carry diseases, it’s still important to know how to handle baby squirrels safely.
If you do find a baby squirrel, it’s important to assess the situation before deciding if you should move the squirrel. Do baby squirrels carry diseases? They can pose some health risks, so remember to approach the situation carefully.
If you find a baby squirrel that’s injured, call a wildlife expert for assistance. If it appears healthy, follow these tips to safely handle the animal:
- Don’t feed or try to give water to the squirrel. You might cause its mother to reject it if she finds out you’ve been handling her young.
- Put on heavy gloves if you must handle the animal.
- Place the baby squirrel in a box with air holes so he doesn’t suffocate.
- Place him in a dark, warm, quiet place until you can get help from a professional or bring him in for treatment at an animal hospital.
Obvious Signs That A Baby Squirrel Needs Your Help
It is often best not to handle a baby squirrel unless you are certain it is in need of help.
We know that the answer to do baby squirrels carry diseases is not so black and white, but we also know that if you find a baby squirrel, your natural instinct is going to be to help it.
But how do you know if a baby squirrel really does need your help? Remember, mother squirrels often leave their babies for periods of time, and finding a nest of baby squirrels without their mother nearby is not all that uncommon.
However, there are some signs you can look for that will show a baby squirrel may need your help. Take a look.
The baby squirrel has an apparent broken limb
If you have found a baby squirrel lying on the ground and it has a broken limb, it is likely that the mother cannot care for it. You will need to bring it to an emergency vet clinic immediately. If you are unable to do so, contact your local wildlife authorities for the next steps.
If you are in a bind, you can create a splint using popsicle sticks and wrap the limb securely in place with gauze or cloth (like a bandage). Keep checking the animal’s condition and when you get the chance, take it to the vet.
The animal is bleeding
If you find a baby squirrel bleeding from somewhere on its body (for instance, from its mouth), then this could be because of something as simple as an insect bite or scratch, but also because of something more serious such as an injury caused by another animal or infection brought about by exposure to bacteria in its environment.
When asking do baby squirrels carry diseases, remember that a sick baby squirrel should certainly not be handled with your bare hands. In either case, the animal could be very sick or in a grave state. Contact your local wild animal authority and take the animal immediately to a vet clinic.
The animal has been brought to you by a pet (a dog or a cat)
If a pet brought the baby squirrel to you, then it’s probably not lost or injured but simply needs help getting back home. The best thing that you can do in this case leaves the animal alone so that its mother can find it again.
Place the baby squirrel in a box like a shoe box with a soft towel at the bottom to keep the squirrel warm and leave it in an area you have noticed squirrel activity or by a nearby tree. Check throughout the day from afar to give the mother squirrel a chance to come back for the baby.
If the mother does not return after several hours, contact your local wildlife authority for the next steps.
The adult squirrel is found dead near the nest
Do baby squirrels carry diseases? Not as often as adult squirrels do. Still, if you see a dead adult squirrel near a nest, it most likely died from being hit by a car or attacked by another animal rather than a disease. If this happens, there is a good chance that some babies are still alive inside the nest and need your help to get out of it.
The baby squirrel has been crying out throughout the day and no adult squirrel has come
The baby squirrel has been crying out throughout the day and no adult squirrel has come. If this happens, then there is a good chance that the baby needs help. The mother would have returned to feed it if she could have. If there are multiple babies in a nest, then some may have died and some may still be alive. You will need to check all of them individually to see if they are responsive, then contact your local wildlife authority for help.
So, You Just Found A Baby Squirrel – Now What?
If you did find baby squirrels, there are some steps you should take before handling them.
If you find baby squirrels that are alone, it is possible that the mother could have been killed or she could have abandoned her young. However, this is not always the case, so just as you asked do baby squirrels carry diseases, you should also ask if the mother truly isn’t coming back. It’s important not to jump to conclusions and disturb a nest of baby squirrels before you know for certain.
Keep in mind that even if you do think you are rescuing a baby squirrel, it is most likely to have the best chances of survival if it can stay with its mother. You should only ever remove a nest of baby squirrels or a baby squirrel from a nest if you know for certain that the mother is not going to return.
So do baby squirrels carry diseases? Not usually. But you should still avoid jumping the gun when it comes to handling them.
Here’s what you should do after you’ve found a baby squirrel and once you’ve answered do baby squirrels carry diseases?
First, Assess The Situation
- Look for signs of the parent nearby
If you find a baby squirrel in its nest and it is not injured, the first thing to do is check for the parent. If there is no parent nearby, remember that this doesn’t always mean that the babies have been abandoned. Keep watch over the nest for several hours to monitor if the adult returns.
If you find a baby squirrel outside of the nest, again check and see if you notice an adult squirrel nearby. If you do, back away and leave the baby squirrel so the mother can come to retrieve it. If you do not, follow the below steps.
- Keep pets out of the area
The best thing you can do when caring for an orphaned baby squirrel is to keep pets away from them so they don’t harm or scare off their mother (or another adult who may come looking for them). If you have dogs or cats at home, make sure they stay indoors while you’re working with the baby squirrel so they won’t accidentally hurt it or chase away its mother.
- Put the baby squirrel in a shoebox with something warm like a towel or blanket
The next thing to do if you find a baby squirrel after answering do baby squirrels carry diseases is to get the animal warm by placing it in a box with something warm like a towel or blanket. Place this box near a tree or in areas of your yard where you have noticed squirrel activity.
- Make sure it’s safe for the animal to be alone.
If a mother has abandoned her baby, the baby might need help getting back to its nest or family group. If you see other animals in an area where you find a baby, then it is possible that they are its parents or siblings.
If you are not sure if the baby can be left alone, leave it alone for at least 30 minutes and watch from a distance until the mother returns (if she does). If no parent comes back after 30 minutes, then the baby should be taken to a wildlife rehabilitator as soon as possible.
If The Squirrel Is Clearly Abandoned, Injured, or If The Mother Does Not Come, Follow These Steps:
- Put on thick gloves for protection
- Place the baby squirrel inside a soft piece of clothing (a winter hat, a soft glove, or a soft scarf
- Place the piece of clothing on a heating pad or warmed hot water bottle
- Contact your local wildlife rehabilitator
Locating the Best Resources To Help A Baby Squirrel
While baby squirrels can be cute, they are not good pets and are wild animals.
Baby squirrels are cute, but they can also be dangerous. Remember, we know the answer to do baby squirrels carry diseases is both a yes and a no, but that is not the only reason you should never attempt to rehabilitate a baby squirrel on your own. The best thing you can do for a baby squirrel if you find one is to contact a wildlife rehabilitation center and let them handle the situation.
Baby squirrels are cute, but they can also be dangerous. Remember, we know the answer to do baby squirrels carry diseases is both a yes and a no, but that is not the only reason you should never attempt to rehabilitate a baby squirrel on your own. The best thing you can do for a baby squirrel if you find one is to contact a wildlife rehabilitation center and let them handle it.
There are many factors that go into finding the best wildlife rehabilitation center for your baby squirrel and some resources can be tricky to find if you’re not sure where to begin. The best resource for you and your situation will also depend on your location, the time and day of the week in which you have found the baby squirrel, and the situation in which the baby squirrel has been discovered.
We should also note here that typical veterinarians who practice on domesticated animals may not be your best resource. It is important to make sure that the resource you are looking into has enough experience with baby squirrels and that they have the proper tools and resources available to help in this unique circumstance.
The first step in finding the right wildlife center is doing research online. There are several websites that list all of the wildlife centers around your area so you can look through each one until you find one that seems like it would be right for you. You should also call different locations up and ask questions about what services they offer and if they have ever dealt with baby squirrels before.
Do baby squirrels carry diseases? Not usually, but it’s still important to do right by the baby squirrel and get it the help it needs, even if that help is not your help specifically.
Remember, If you have found a baby squirrel, the most important thing to avoid is to try and rehabilitate it yourself. Squirrels are wild animals, and they can still be dangerous even when they are young. They have sharp teeth and claws, and they will bite and scratch if they feel threatened.
They also need special care that only licensed wildlife rehabilitators can provide. The rehabilitation process takes time and resources, so unless you are sure that the squirrel needs help, the best thing to do is to leave the baby squirrel alone until you can find a professional who can assess its condition unless you know the squirrel will certainly die if you leave it.
What To Do If You Have Nesting Squirrels In Your Home
Baby squirrels are completely dependent on their mothers after birth.
Another reason you may be wondering do baby squirrels carry diseases is if you discovered nesting squirrels in your home.
Yes, it is possible and even somewhat common for squirrels to nest in our homes. In fact,s squirrels often find their way inside our homes and nest in attics, walls, crawl spaces, and rafters because these areas may provide them with safety and shelter away from predators. If this happens, it is not only hazardous to your home and your health, but it is also not very safe for squirrels.
If you have squirrels in your home, you are probably wondering how to get them out. The first thing you need to do is determine why they are there. There are many reasons why a squirrel may want to nest inside your home.
Squirrels will build nests for their babies and for themselves, as we mentioned above. They like to be high off the ground, so if they can find an opening into your home, they will try to get inside. They may also use it as shelter from predators and bad weather conditions.
But how do you know if squirrels are nesting in your home? Well, there are plenty of signs. If you see the below signs, it might mean you have nesting squirrels and could be a good reason to look into do baby squirrels carry diseases.
Nesting material – This includes straw, sticks, and pine needles. You might also find mud on the floor or walls near where they’ve been chewing on things.
Gnaw marks – Squirrels chew on wood because they’re looking for food and nesting material. If there are gnaw marks in places like your attic or crawl space where there’s no food at all, that could be a sign of squirrel infestation!
Droppings – Squirrel droppings can build up and so can their urine. You may notice the smell of squirrel waste before you see it, but this is often a telltale sign that squirrels are nesting in your walls, attic, or crawl space.
What to do if you have nesting squirrels inside your home
If you have nesting squirrels in your home, you may be wondering what to do. It can be a little bit unnerving to have these furry critters in your attic or basement. And if they’re not nesting, they might be chewing on wires or causing other damage.
It’s important to keep an eye out for signs of squirrels in your house and not let them make themselves at home. You’ll want to know how to get rid of them once you’ve discovered them, and part of ensuring you get rid of squirrels is figuring out not only do baby squirrels carry diseases but just how many baby and adult squirrels you are dealing with.
If you are dealing with nesting squirrels, it may be best to contact a professional. You do not want to remove a mother squirrel without removing her babies, as this could leave the babies to die inside your home. Not only is this cruel, but the dead rodent smell can be hazardous to your health and even your sanity.
On the other hand, if you are confident that you’re only dealing with adult squirrels, there are several products you can use to get rid of them, as well as products you can use to keep them from getting inside your home.
So, Do Baby Squirrels Carry Disease – Experts Weigh In On What To Do If You Find A Baby Squirrel
Remember, there are dos and don’ts to follow when finding a baby squirrel.
If you find an abandoned baby squirrel around your home, it is very likely that its mother is nearby and will come back if given enough time. So, it is important not to rush into anything as this can be dangerous for the squirrel.
- Observe the area
- Keep pets and small children away
- Place the animal near the tree or wherever you think the parents may be
- Observe the squirrel throughout the day
- If the parent does not come, place the animal in a shoebox with a blanket, two, or other warm cloth inside
- Call your local resources for help.
- Attempt to rehabilitate the squirrel in your home
Remember, don’t try to rehab wild animals on your own! Only a professional who has experience rehabilitating wild animals should attempt rehabilitation of any kind. And while we know that it is not a likely yes to the question, do baby squirrels carry diseases, they can in rare instances. For this reason, if you are bitten by a baby squirrel, seek medical help immediately.
Jack founded our blog after two decades of working in the pest control industry. His vast experience dealing with a wide array of pests allows him to diagnose issues quickly and get to the heart of pest problems quickly and effectively. He has serviced more than 2,000 homes over his career and there is hardly any pest situation that he has not seen before.