Kits (young weasels or stoats) are born naked, blind and deaf. It takes approximately 5 weeks for them to be weaned, and under normal circumstances they stay with the mother for about 12 weeks. During this time kits are extremely vulnerable. Depending on circumstances, usually man-made, they can get easily separated from their mother, injured, or end up in a life-threatening situation.
If finding a single kit or group of kits in need of rescue, the first thing to do is to keep them warm. The second thing to do is to quickly contact either ourselves (Click Here) or one of the other recommended wildlife rescue centres listed under links.
When found, orphaned kits are usually very dehydrated, and depending on the age of the kit may desperately need feeding. Time is of the essence and quick action is required if the young animal is to survive.
Because rearing young mustelids requires specialist knowledge as well as lots of time and dedication to keep them alive, we would not recommend it for the inexperienced. Even for those with lots of experience it is often a very difficult task. If you find a kit that is in need of rescue please do not hesitate to contact us directly on the telephone number above or contact one of the recommended animal rescue sanctuaries listed.
If you are a sanctuary or rescue centre that needs any support or guidance in relation to caring for a kit, please contact us and we would be very happy to assist. Alternatively you may find useful guideline notes: Here.
WARNING: Stoats and weasels should always be handled with caution. With all but the youngest kits, remember to wear stout leather gloves as these animals will bite and hold on. The bites from adults can be severe.
For guidelines on the handling of adult mustelids please click HERE