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Wildlife Safety Tips from the City of Janesville

As summer approaches, the City of Janesville would like to remind residents of a few wildlife safety tips to help ensure community members and our animal counterparts have a safe and healthy summer season.

  • Always keep your pets supervised and on a short leash when outdoors. These actions help keep domesticated pets like dogs from chasing wildlife, potentially injuring themselves or other animals. It also helps protect pets from natural predators, such as coyotes or birds of prey. Never allow domesticated cats to reside outside. In addition to violating City Ordinance, outdoor cats can pose a significant threat to native wildlife and are far more susceptible to disease or injury.

  • Remember to remain respectful when you encounter animals. Wildlife should not be harassed, disturbed, or touched. Do not attempt to handle wild mammals, as it can harm your health and the animal. The same applies to stray cats and dogs, who may become vicious when frightened or carry deadly diseases.

  • Never feed or leave food behind for wildlife. Janesville's natural ecosystem offers animals plenty to eat and drink. Providing them with food may create an unhealthy dependence on humans. Keep garbage secured in a manner that is not accessible to foraging wildlife.

  • If you suspect an animal is sick or injured, do not attempt to assist it yourself. Contact the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources Call Center at 1 (888) 936-7463. Staff will be able to assist you in finding a licensed wildlife rehabilitator for the animal. If you locate a stray domestic animal like a cat or dog, contact the Humane Society of Southern Wisconsin at (608) 752-5622. If an animal is acting aggressively towards people, call 911.

By following these tips, you can help protect yourself and Janesville's native wildlife. For questions and additional information, contact the City of Janesville Parks Division at (608) 755-3025.

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