Fox trapped in car wheel to squirrel down loo: RSPCA reveal weirdest animal rescues

The RSPCA has revealed the 20 wackiest animal rescues of the year – including saving a squirrel from a toilet and a snake in an oven.

The pictures show hapless pets and wild animals trapped in bizarre places before being freed by baffled rescuers.


The charity has compiled the 20 oddest rescues of 2018, with the weirdest being a fox cub which trapped its head in a car wheel.

Other strange call-outs include a squirrel which fell down the loo, a snake in a dishwasher and a chubby dog stuck between a wall and fence.


An RSPCA spokesperson said: “More than one million calls are made to the RSPCA each year to report animals in need of help.

“Some certainly get themselves into some surprising situations.”


In June, a fox cub got its head wedged inside an old car wheel in Leyton, London, and needed to be rescued with vegetable oil.

RSPCA inspector Kate Ford said: “This poor little fox cub was in a complete pickle.

“He had somehow managed to jam his head through the hole in an old car wheel and was stuck fast.

“He was beginning to panic and I knew we needed to work quickly.

“I tried to ease his head back through the hole, but it just wouldn’t go.

“He clearly needed some lubrication, so I used some cooking oil which the animal-loving resident had retrieved from his house – and that did the trick.”

Meanwhile in May, RSPCA collection officer Kirstie Gillard was called to a student house in Southwark, London, after a squirrel was found in the toilet.

She said: “Fortunately the squirrel wasn’t injured at all and I could release him back into the wild where he belongs.

“I think he must have come into this house through the roof and slipped into the toilet.

“It was certainly one of the most unusual rescues I’ve ever carried out.”

In March, Verity O’Neill called the charity after her eight-week-old Yorkshire Terrier Ringo Starr got his head stuck in the TV cabinet at home in Birkenhead, Merseyside.


Bizarrely, a man had a fright when he spotted a corn snake slithering out of his cereal box and into his dishwasher at his home in Sheffield.

RSPCA collection officer Katie Hetherington, who dashed to the house on May 19, said:
“I think he was expecting to have Cornflakes for breakfast – not Cornsnakes.

“The poor chap was absolutely terrified. I think it was the last thing he expected to find in his kitchen.”


The 3ft-long snake, believed to be an escaped pet, was taken to a specialist centre.


In January, rescuers saved a stray cat after it got trapped inside a reclining sofa in Bristol while a fox got its head wedged in a fence while exploring a garden in Loughton, Essex.

In Luton, a curious cat needed help after it got trapped between two electric sliding doors at a Premier Inn hotel.

Another cat, called Skittles, lost one of it’s nine lives when it was impaled by metal railings in Cricklewood, London.

After a high-profile campaign, Skittle’s owners came forward to claim their beloved pet.


Another hapless moggy also got itself in trouble when it got trapped inside a tumble dryer vent at its owner’s home in Kidderminster, Worcs.

RSPCA officers also helped Roxy the bulldog after it got stuck between a wall and a fence in Heol Cleddau, Swansea.

The charity was also called to rescue wild animals which had got into scrapes, including a muntjac deer from a narrow gap behind a garage in Bedworth, Warks.

A goat also needed help after getting stuck under a metal fence in Stockton-on-Tees, County Durham.


In August, a greedy badger was found wedged in branches after it climbed up a fruit tree in a walled garden in Harefield, London.

Another cheeky badger was rescued in Crewkerne, Somerset, when a couple found it stuck in their wheelie bin after it went scavenging for food scraps.


A not-so-cunning fox had a lucky escape when it was trapped for more than 12 hours in a car’s front grille.

It was run over on September 8 in Letchworth, Hertfordshire, but the driver only spotted it the next day. Despite its ordeal, the animal made a full recovery.

Meanwhile two randy hedgehogs were rescued after they fell through the gaps in a cattle grid in Harbury, Warks., while mating.

The RSPCA were also called to secure a live scorpion which scuttled across a bed in the posh Hyatt Regency Hotel in Birmingham just days before Tory MPs were due to stay there for their annual party conference.

By Richard McAllister

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