FEEDING BABY DEER
fawns go through two containers of milk a day. All goat milk
or a fawn replacement milk should be used. Some
Walmart stores carry goat milk; Tractor Supply stores carry
a wildlife replacement milk that will include fawns on the
A newborn fawn is the size of two Chihuahuas.
It's important to add seven drops of lactate as well
to the formula. If you have a young fawn, do not add
they are the size of the deer in the photos below, add
some solid food to the formula such as baby rice or baby
Mix it well with water until it has a pudding-like consistency.
Deer love sweet tastes, and bananas are always a good
source of sweetness. For older deer, you can add a banana,
but be sure to beat it with a fork until it liquefies.
You can put it into a blender or use a mixer and stir
it up -- but make sure the banana seeds don't clog the
|The hole in this
nipple is too large!
Also, be sure that the hole in the nipple
is not too large so the liquid cannot be drunk too quickly.
If they drink too fast, they will give themselves a stomachache
along with having digestive problems.
Before feeding, heat up the formula.
You don't want to feed deer cold formula. Then give it
to the deer before everybody else eats it. (Ingrid said
that as one of her cats was sampling the formula to be
sure it was just right.)
Use a funnel to pour the mixture into
baby bottles (two per fawn per feeding).
two feedings a day. Be sure to heat the liquid. It must
be given very warm.
When feeding, keep the bottles high
because that's how they would eat from the mother as
she stands up
They go through it quickly.
You can pull and push back and forth
as you feed, because that's what the mother does.
Also take a warm wet cloth and wipe
the genital area to help stimulate the bowels. If they
are not kept regular, they will get diarrhea or become
The deer in the photo are not that young,
more like two months old. By the way, these guys
are not related.
If they're older, you can chop up carrots
or apples and just stick the pieces in their mouth. When
deer go from formula to other foods, it's a big move.
Unless you actually see a dead doe, leave
the fawn alone. Fawns are rarely orphaned. The mother
will often run if you approach, and return to the fawn after
you leave; the fawn can't run, and will typically freeze
and try not to be seen.
Be sure to contact an animal rehabilitator
promptly if you are dealing with a young fawn, because
they imprint quickly, and once imprinted, are problematic
The R.O.C.K. column is each issue of the
Wildlife Watch Binocular.
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