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Elbow Room at the Cape Wildlife Center

The CWC builds a new state-of-the-art facility

  • The Cape Wildlife Center veterinary care facility started as a garage. Heather Fone/The HSUS

  • Post-renovation, it is a full-service hospital ward for wildlife—the only one of its kind on the Cape. Heather Fone/The HSUS

  • The CWC was even able to build a sunny nursery ward upstairs. Heather Fone/The HSUS

Julie Hauserman

The animal hospital at The Humane Society of the United States’ Cape Wildlife Center is getting some badly needed elbow room, thanks to a new state-of-the-art facility that is being dedicated today.

“It is set up to be an animal hospital ward. It will be the only one of its kind on Cape Cod and one of the few independent facilities of its kind in the North East,” said CWC Director Theresa Barbo.

From garage to hospital

A roomy, multi-car garage on the property provided the perfect place to build the animal hospital ward. CWC Staff Veterinarian Dr. Roberto Aguilar helped design the floor plan to maximize room for the various types of animals who come the center for care—everything from sick swans who need deadly lead pellets removed from their bellies, to raccoons who have been hit by cars.

“It’s designed exclusively for native wildlife with safety for the animals and the staff in mind,” said Aguilar. “The upper floor is a dedicated area for raising juvenile animals, divided into an avian and mammalian ward.”

A place for everyone

The separation of functions—with five wards on the ground level as well as an isolation ward—allows CWC staff and trained volunteers to treat orphaned and juvenile animals in separate spaces with dedicated and specialized gear.

One to two wards can be combined and dedicated to mammals, while the other two wards can be dedicated to birds and their care. A smaller ward that is especially designed for reptiles and amphibians has separate temperature and humidity controls for their comfort and health.

Get to know the Cape Wildlife Center

The Cape Wildlife Center is open year-round to receive ailing, orphaned and injured wildlife and to provide wildlife rehabilitation. In 2009 alone, the CWC received and cared for over 1,700 animals.

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