I’ve found a fawn! What do I do?

If you have found a fawn similar to what is below, then the fawn is likely fine and waiting for mama to return! Fawn are trying their best not to be seen, will flatten themselves to the ground, or curl up in a ball, and have very little scent. A healthy fawn will have a visibly wet nose, and wet to the touch. Ears will be perky and not curled at the tips.

It is absolutely illegal for you to take a fawn and keep as a pet.

Healthy Fawn Waiting for Mama Doe to Return

The fawn I found doesn’t look like the above deer, now what?

There's a fawn in the grass in my front yard : aww
Curled ears show sign of dehydration

The fawn needs help if it is:

On it’s side or back, bleeding, visible wounds, covered in flies or walking around bleating in distress.

Extremely thin, curled ear tips (see above), or a visibly dry nose.

Sitting next to or walking around near a deceased doe

In the roadway and will not leave the road

The fawn meets all or some of the criteria above, now what?

Do not try to raise the fawn yourself. Fawn are not pets. It is illegal and they must be handed over to an approved SC wildlife rehabber. DNR can help you find a local one.

Fawn are complicated, fragile creatures that need proper care. You are not doing the right thing if you keep it. It can never be wild and free if it is tame and has no fear. It costs the fawn its freedom and it cannot be wild. Fawn imprint easily on humans and keeping 1 fawn will surely result in a very tame, un-releasable deer.

Contact a local rehabber for transport and details on where the fawn needs to be dropped off or taken to. Please ensure they are on the Approved DNR list below.

Local SC Upstate Rehabbers: Magnolia Fawn Rescue, Possum Kingdom Fawn Rescue, Hickory Haven Fawn Rescue, Izzie’s Pond Rescue, Two Hearts Wildlife Rehab, Greenville Wildlife Rehab

The full list is here:


It looks hungry, should I feed it?

It is best to not feed a fawn anything except unflavored electrolyte (Pedialyte) until a wildlife rehabber can get the fawn. Fawn diet must be correct from the beginning of care or the fawn can suffer serious complications resulting in death or inability to release back to the wild.

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