The Chattanooga Zoo’s Wildlife Rehab Department is a licensed rehabilitation facility that maintains permits from the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency (TWRA) and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS). The Wildlife Rehab Department operates from 11:00am to 4:00pm daily.

To ensure our Wildlife Rehabilitation Staff is available to care for the animal, please call and speak with a rehab representative BEFORE bringing the animal to the zoo. (Contact the Zoo) Please LEAVE US A MESSAGE and we will return your call as quickly as possible to arrange your admission.

Due to staffing, the Chattanooga Zoo is not available to preform animal rescues. All animals that need rescuing will need to be brought to the Zoo after arranging an admission with our staff.

What happens to the animals that are rescued?

The Chattanooga Zoo operates as an intake facility only and partners with several wildlife rehabilitators in the surrounding area. The animals brought to the Zoo are transferred to other rehabilitators shortly after admission. These rehabilitators will then care for the animal until they are ready to be released back into the wild. If you find an injured, orphaned, or displaced animal, feel free to contact them directly.

Can I care for the animal myself?

For the safety of the animals and individuals, Tennessee state law PROHIBITS individuals keeping wildlife without a permit. The Wildlife Rehabilitation Staff can assist you with emergency instructions to care for the animal until you can get it to a licensed rehabilitator.

Can the zoo accept my animal?

Due to state wildlife laws, the Chattanooga Zoo is NOT permitted to rehabilitate animals found outside the state of Tennessee. Should you find an animal outside the state of Tennessee, please contact the state's Wildlife Department for more information (see below).

Due to possible rabies exposure, the Chattanooga Zoo is NOT permitted to rehabilitate raccoons, bats, foxes, coyotes or skunks. Rabies is a viral disease that is transferred through the saliva of an infected animal. Because of this, the animal does not necessarily have to bite you to transfer the disease. If you find one of these animals we strongly recommend not handling the animal. If the animal has bitten you, contact your local health department immediately.

Animal Help Now App

download the free Animal Help Now app

Smartphone users, download the free Animal Help Now app to find a licensed wildlife rehabilitator. Using your location, this app will assist you in getting in touch with a wildlife rehabilitator near you.

Learn More

Resources

Tish Gailmard
Chattanooga | Mammals 423.886.6224
Alix Parks
Chattanooga | Birds of Prey 423.847.5757
Sherry Teas
Chattanooga | Songbirds 423.593.0032
Walden’s Puddle
Nashville | Mammals, Birds & Reptiles 615.299.9938
Angela Hensley
Murfreesboro | Mammals 615.631.2205
LouAnn Partington
Tullahoma | Songbirds 931.393.4835