Eau Claire (WQOW) - With hot temperatures ahead, it's not just your pets that need to stay cool, but local wildlife as well.
While DNR officials stress it's best to let wildlife stay wild, there are still some ways you can help without interfering too much.
Holly Doud, a volunteer with the Chippewa Valley Wildlife Rehabilitation Center, said one of the most surefire ways to make summer easier on critters is leaving water out in a variety of accessible ways.
This could be in a birdbath, a clean baking dish, or even just watering plants in the morning so insects and other animals can catch the water droplets.
"I think people really take for granted that, just like our pets do, wildlife struggles when it's really hot like this," Doud said. "It can be stressful for them, trying to find water and shade and ways to stay cool."
Some other suggestions include placing rocks in the water so insects can access it without drowning, as well as putting a frozen water bottle, wrapped in a cloth, outside for squirrels to lean up against.