Low-Stress Approach Used for Removing Jar from Raccoon’s Head

ARL Rescue Services Assist Woburn ACO

Animal Rescue League of Boston (ARL) Rescue Services has certainly had its share of calls to help animals in strange predicaments — a squirrel with its head stuck in a dumpster drain or animal bone, cats in walls, and this week we add a raccoon in a tree with a plastic jar stuck on its head.

On Tuesday, Woburn’s Animal Control Officer contacted ARL regarding the raccoon. He appeared to be healthy and uninjured, but the jar posed a number of dangers — induced panic from the enclosed space, inability to eat or see, and the possibility of falling out of the tree. A trap had been set at the base of the tree, but it was clear that responders had to go to the animal, not wait for him to come down.

The raccoon was about 25 feet up in the tree, which made him accessible, but understandably the raccoon was stressed. The goal of rescuers was to try and remove the jar without having to snare the raccoon and bring him to the ground — easier said than done.

Climbing about 15 feet up in to the tree and using an 11-foot extension pole, ARL Senior Rescue Agent Mike Brammer essentially had to play ring-toss with the jar, positioning it just right to pull it off the raccoon’s head without making him panic.

After several attempts, the jar came off, fluttered to the ground and was disposed of properly (just in case the raccoon didn’t learn his lesson) and the animal remained free in the tree without injury!

Make Double the Impact 

In the past year, ARL Rescue Services has responded to well over 1,500 wildlife rescue calls. ARL receives no government and relies solely on the generosity of individuals to make our work possible. As part of Giving Tuesday, your support can now have double the impact.

#GivingTuesday is an international movement created to encourage giving back to the charities nearest and dearest to your heart during the busy holiday season.

Because ARL is committed to keeping animals safe and healthy in their habitats and homes, our Board of Directors and President have teamed up to offer this incredible challenge:

Raise $100,000 and they will double it.*

That means any gift you make now through November 28 will be matched dollar for dollar to help us reach our total goal of $200,000 for animals in need! Donate $100 or more and you or your pet will be acknowledged on ARL’s #GivingTuesday Wall of Honor.

*The match only applies to the first $100K in donations ARL receives but all gifts will go to help animals in need.