2) Complete the Permit Application

A sample of the wildlife rehabilitation permit application can be found in the Study Guide.  Upon successful completion of your written exam, you will be given the permit application to complete.  On the application form you will answer a series of questions indicating your experience and training, the caging and equipment you have, your knowledge of diets, safe handling procedures, knowledge of zoonotic diseases and other factors related to your readiness to rehabilitate wildlife.  You will also need to indicate who your veterinary consultant is and as a novice who is your mentor with a Master permit.

3) Pass a Facilities Inspection

Call to set up a time for your site inspection. The purpose of the inspection is to insure you will provide a safe and humane environment for the animals in your care and that your facility is safe for you, your family members, and in-shelter assistants. For more information on applying for the Minnesota DNR Wildlife Rehabilitation Permit, visit the DNR website: 


​Some of the questions or things the inspector will be looking for:

A. General questions:  
•    Do you have experience working with wildlife? 
•     Do you have continuing education or training with wildlife?
•    Is there a clean/organized place to accept animals?  
•    Do you have an animal intake form to record animals received? 
•    Which species of wildlife do you wish to rehabilitate?

B. Adequate caging: 
​ •    Do you meet minimum recommended sizes of caging for species at various stages of rehabilitation? 
Note:  DNR does not impose minimum size requirements but strongly recommends minimum standards based on NWRA principles (See appendix in MN Wildlife Rehabilitation Study Guide).  
•    Are the enclosures or caging predator proof and escape proof? 
​ •    Are the cages separated from people and pets? Insulated from stressors of noise and activity? 
•    Is there fresh water available?  
•    Are the cages easy to clean? 
•    Are there places to hide, perch or things to learn to climb on? 
•    Is outdoor caging protected from the elements? Do they provide pre-release conditioning?  
Note: If you do not have outdoor caging, do you have a list of permitted rehabilitators you will transfer animals to when they outgrow your cages or need pre-release conditioning? 
•    Do you have towels, newspapers, etc. for cage linings and bedding?  
•    Do you have carriers for transporting animals?

C. Equipment: 
•    Do you have nets, towels, catch-pole etc. for capturing and restraining animals? 
•    Do you have appropriate gloves for handling animals? 
•    Is external heating available? e.g. a heating pad, incubator, heat lamp. 
•    Is there an assortment of feeding and nursing dishes and utensils? 
•    Do you have appropriate rehydration products available? 
•    Do you have a gram measuring scale? 
•    Do you have various diets and milk-replacement formulas available or know where to purchase them?

D. Sanitation: 
•    Do you have cleaning agents? e.g. soap, bleach, disinfectants, etc. 
​ •    Are wildlife equipment, tools, and utensils kept separate from household dishes and utensils? 
​ •    Are you aware of zoonotic diseases and how to minimize your risk? 
•    How will you deal with dead animal disposal?

E. Wildlife rehabilitation contacts:
​ •    Do you know who your conservation officer is? 
•     Do you know who your non-game wildlife specialist is? 
•    Do you have a veterinarian consultant? 
•    Who is your designated Master Class mentor? 
•    Do you have a release site?

​These are most of the questions and things they are looking for. All of these things and other helpful and important wildlife issues are covered in the study guide.See the appendix in the back of the MN Wildlife Rehabilitation Study Guide for a detailed list of the requirements for your facilities inspection.

1) Pass A Written Exam

Preparing for the written exam is easy because the study guides contain all the questions and answers that may be on the test. These books are available at Minnesota’s Bookstore.  You can order on-line or over the phone. 

Minnesota’s Bookstore
​660 Olive Street, St. Paul, MN 55155
651-297-3000 or 1-800-657-3757
​TTY: 651-282-5077 or 1-800-657-3706

"Minnesota Wildlife Rehabilitation Study Guide and Examination Study Booklet" (set of 2 books)
Stock Number: 313
​Price: $50.00 plus shipping for set of 2 books

​The MN Wildlife Rehabilitation Study Guide and Exam Booklet are also available from the following library systems: Hennepin, Ramsey, Anoka, and Carver Counties, and the U of M. You might be able to borrow the books from someone but make sure you return them in a timely fashion. The study guide is good reference material for your own wildlife rehabilitation library.  Read the study guide and practice the exam questions.  You will need to know the answers to 100 questions out of the possible 650 novice questions listed in the exam study guide. All of the questions on the exam are from the exam study guide book.  Most of these questions are common sense questions.  The test is 100 multiple-choice questions and will take about ½ to 1 hour to complete. They will tell you your score right there and you need to get at least 80% of them right.

​Call Minnesota DNR to set up a time to take the permit test.  The contact is Heidi Cyr, at (651) 259-5107 (heidi.cyr@state.mn.us). The test is taken at the DNR building in St. Paul.

Only Three Steps.
1) Pass a Written Exam. 2) Complete the Permit Application. 3) Pass a Facilities Inspection.

Getting your Rehabilitation Permit

It is easier than you think

Wildlife Rehabilitation & Release