top of page

Become a Wildlife Rehabber

   Our rehabbers at Palmetto Wildlife Rescue and Rehabilitation are all volunteers who dedicate their lives to saving these animals.  We are excited to start offering classes to bring more people into our little family. We call ourselves a family because in order for our mission to stay successful, we have got to act as a unit, and be loyal to each other and to these animals.  While this is volunteer work and it can be fun sometimes and rewarding on so many levels, it is HARD work. You will be dedicating 24 hours a day 7 days a week to this mission. Many of the animals we bring in require around the clock care, so if you work a job outside of this you will need to make sure that this is something your regular employer will be able to accommodate. 

     PWRR takes the care of ever animal very seriously, and while we love to keep things light hearted and fun every moment we are able to, we will be screening potential rehabbers. South Carolina DNR, DHEC and state legislatures are working together to try and make laws more strict around in home rehabbing and with that we strive to stay in compliance with those regulations and make sure that everyone on our team operates a safe, clean and well maintained home environment for these animals to grow and recover in.  While this is not enforced by law we do like for our RVS rehabbers to have the pre exposure vaccine to be able to rehab that animal. This is for your safety and risk while handling RVS animals. 

IMG_1035 (1).JPG

​     All rehabbers regardless of experience or background will be

required to take our rehabbing classes. We have a basic course that

gives all of the starter information on what a rehabber does, procedures,

information about medications we would use and protocols on how to handle certain situations.  PWRR will also hold classes for each animal that we rescue and rehabilitate, while you do not have to take all of those courses that are offered, you will have to take the classes for each animal that you wish to rehab. We want to make sure that all of our rehabbers stay up to date on current recommendations and treatments so that we can best care for every animal in our care.  A few other screening and maintance requests may include having vet references for any personal pets you have to ensure that you do provide proper care to your personal animals and that your current animals are up to date on any vaccinations prior to allowing PWRR animals into your home. For new rehabbers we will pair you with some of our more experienced rehabbers to help guide you and help build your experience, they will also join you at your home from time to time to make sure cages are being kept up and proper techniques are being applied. 

     We do not wish to micromanage anyone or make this an unpleasant experience, we are all passionate about this and want to make memories while doing what we love, we just always have to make sure that we are doing things to the best of our ability and to learn from any areas that may need improvement.

​    Rehabber membership fees are $50 a year and classes are paid separately. Rehabbers will get a t-shirt for events and just to proudly wear, additional shirts are able to be purchased. We try our best to provide you with whatever supplies you need through the donations we receive, we are constantly fundraising with the hopes that little to nothing will have to come out of pocket for any of our rehabbers, however being a new organization there may be times where you will have to buy supplies, we aim to reimburse those expenses when donation funds come available.


The PWRR family will stay in close contact through Facebook groups and chats, we will use the platform for educational information, asking each other for advice on animal care, keeping up with events and just day to day updates. We are excited to look over your information and the possibility of you joining the family!


Please feel free to add any questions to your application that you may have!​​

IMG_1037 (1).JPG

Rehabber Application


Please leave a detailed response on why you want to become a wildlife rehabber, and how you will be able to accommodate this huge lifestyle change.If you work, tell us about your job and how you will juggle the animals and work; note babies require around the clock care and will need to be with you for feedings every few hours. Please also include your personal pets (type, age, how they are kept in your home) as well as your vets information to check their vaccination statuses.

Upload File

Thanks for submitting!

A Little Letter From Us!  What to expect next!      

            If you are or have already submitted the application, once you take your class or even prior to the class we like you to have an idea of what you need to prepare for in your home and with your schedule- and so that if you join there are no surprises. We want everyone to have a pretty good idea of what committing to this lifestyle entails.

          Rehabbers dedicate just about 24 hours a day to these animals. When you have nursing babies and injured wildlife there will be times where you are needed all hours of the night-or day. If you work a full time job as mentioned above you have got to be 100% your employer is okay with you having to bring these little ones with you to work; older animals that do not nurse as frequently as the tiny ones will give a lot more flexibility of that is not an option for you to have animals at your job. Anyone who has not taken our courses does not need to care for the animals. Again, as stated above the animals well being and safety are our priority, and when they are inside of your home it is your job to ensure that they do not get hurt or played with. They need to be kept in a quiet area of the home, we ask that you have them in a separate room if at all possible; especially if you have other pets in the home, curious dogs or cats have been known to grab little hands or fingers through the cage or knock cages over being curious.

          For newer rehabbers we are shooting towards pairing people up with some of the more experienced rehabbers as mentors and letting yall start with some of the older babies- possibly even letting a few go home with new rehabbers the day of class. One thing that we are also doing as we are building our network and getting a surplus of cages and other supplies, is jumping on marketplace and reaching out to people for items we can use. For the juvenile squirrels we use ferret nation cages or bird cages to give them room to climb and play; and reaching out to your friends/family as well to see if they have any items that they wish to donate to you- being a non profit we can provide them receipts for a tax write off. So far we have had a good bit of luck reaching out to people that way, but will probably make posts in the rehabber group we are creating so that way multiple rehabbers aren't reaching out to the same person.

         We have created a facebook group for us, which  is private to our rehabbers and will send you an invite link so you can join in on that and meet our board members and other rehabbers, if you have signed up to become a rehabber. We use facebook for most of our communication just since it is so quickly accessible and easy for most people, If you happen not to have a facebook for whatever reason we do ask that you make one, even if it is under an alias so that you can keep track of all of the things we post and share inside this group and on our facebook page. We share a lot of educational information from other rehabbers across the nation. We have found that this is the easiest tool for everyone to keep up with and stay on top of what is going on day to day.

          We ask for your personal pets vet to make sure that you are proactive in taking care of your own animals and just for safety sake with bringing animals into your home that are within the rabies vector species that your babies are covered health wise also. One big issue that at home rehabbers are facing at the moment is DNR/DHEC and some of our state legislatures are trying to make it where we cannot have wildlife around our personal pets. There have been so many rehabbers across the state that are being investigated due to neglect and hoarding of wildlife. PWRR has been in contact with legislatures voicing out opinions and concerns on how this will affect us with nursing babies every 2-3 hours around the clock and not having the funding to build a separate structure to house the animals we take in. Long story short we are facing some pretty big changes if these regulations are put in place and just want to make sure people are aware that are joining so that we all take the proper steps to avoid adding to their side of why they should be approved- ie making sure we dont let our personal pets interact with the animals being rehabbed to avoid injury to either animal, keeping cages and areas sanitary to avoid spreading of any possible illnesses between animals etc. In the meantime if you are comfortable with the possibility of animals coming home with you after courses on the 23rd (or after any class in the future), start going through your home and thinking of the best quiet and safe area to set up for these animals. Make sure this is an area that your cats/dogs will not have unsupervised access, ideally no access at all just since the more acclimated wild animals are with domesticated pets, their ability to see them as predators when released could be affected. Making sure they do not paw/claw at the cages or be able to knock them over where animals could be let out or injured is also why we recommend this.

          When you have a general idea of where you can set up for them, post a video or pictures in the rehabber group so we can give you some feedback just to make sure things are ready. I'll try to get a list of other things that you guys will be needing. I know for sure any fleece blankets are essential to help keep these guys warm and snuggled up. We don't use towels just because their nails can get caught in the little loops. Heating pads for younger ones, we usually get the ones that do not have the auto shut off function just because we don't them cutting off when we are asleep and the animals getting too cold. Once we review your info we will respond to you and give you some feedback as to if you will be a good fit to join the PWRR family.

          If you sign up for classes and are not ready to commit to becoming a rehabber, that is absolutely fine! Everything we do is strictly voluntary and this is a big decision to make, so we want you to feel sure before joining, if you join and realize going into things further that this is not your cup of tea. WE GET IT!!! You have no obligation to continue caring for the animals, they will be reassigned to another rehabber. You can still be a part of the Critter Support Crew and do all the fun things with us and just not have the animals in your home to care for. No matter the circumstance we are just excited to be able to have your interest and that you have a big enough heart and love these animals enough to even consider joining our little family!! We value all the relationships that we form with every encounter and will always do what is best for everyone, from our supporters, our volunteers, our rehabbers, and especially the animals!!!!

          Please never hesitate if you have any questions or even want to see what it is like as a home rehabber, just about every one of our current ones will welcome you into their home to show you what it is all about!! Pop over to the contact page if you do have anything else you want to clarify or even just to chit chat!

With so much love, 

          The PWRR Family 

bottom of page