You generally have to apply to your state for the necessary permits, show that you have enough land/space for the type of animals you want to rehab, and some basic knowledge is a huge help. A background in vet tech or vet work helps a lot ~ and a good relationship WITH a vet is definitely a plus.
It's hard work, many times heartbreaking, but also very satisfying and worth it when you can release an animal. You do the work of three shifts ~ there is no off time, especially when you have 20 babies all needing to be fed round the clock. I used to cert. for vectors, but the paperwork requirements are now just plain nuts. That being said, I'd still take in and raise orphans, or nurse injured wildlife without the cert.
If you have no training, google wildlife rehab and find one in your area ~ offer to volunteer to help first. If nothing else, donate towels, newspaper, cash, etc. because the need is neverending!
at 12:51 PM on Apr. 20, 2010