A Tiffy Taffy Highlight Story: Sometimes, there are tales that are just too good, too beautiful, or too unbelievable to keep locked away. That’s why we scour the archives and bring some of them back to enjoy again. They may make you smile or shed a tear, but they’re always meant to add a little positivity to your day. This story is from May 2019. Enjoy!
In Saint Andrews, an incident unfolded as two teens became the saviors of a squirrel trapped under a vehicle. The tiny creature found itself covered in a layer of rigid foam insulation, leaving it barely recognizable as a squirrel.
According to Jaydon Pettipas, one of the rescuers, it appeared as though a huge ball of insulation foam was darting around. While taking a walk through downtown Saint Andrews on Monday, Pettipas and his friend Aidan Hart came across a group of ten individuals outside Joey’s Your Independent Grocer.
Intrigued, they approached the scene for a closer inspection. They were astounded to witness the small rodent covered in the foam. They realized that time was running out for the poor animal. “There was nothing recognizable about it,” Pettipas said.
With quick thinking, the teen jumped to the squirrel’s rescue
In a display of quick thinking, 16-year-old Hart sprang into action and entered the nearby grocery store to grab a small milk crate. One which would serve as a temporary shelter for the squirrel. With urgency in their hearts, they immediately reached out to their family and friends, seeking assistance. Pettipas, aged 15, said, “No one knew what to do with it.”
Fortunately, Pettipas’s mother stepped in and took charge of the situation. She promptly contacted the nearest veterinary clinic located in St. George. Which was approximately 20 miles northeast of Saint Andrews. They were advised to bring the squirrel in as soon as possible.
However, before leaving from the scene, the compassionate onlookers requested Pettipas’s cellphone number, expressing their desire to stay updated on the squirrel’s condition the following day. Being a tenth-grade student, Pettipas received numerous calls regarding the squirrel, showing collective concern and interest in the squirrel’s well-being.
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The vet had never seen something quite like this before
Upon the arrival of the animal at the St. George Veterinary Clinic, Dr. Melanie Eagan was taken aback by what she saw. “I had never seen anything of this nature previously,” she expressed. According to Dr. Eagan, the squirrel showed limited mobility, except for its hind legs, which had faint movement. She described the creature as being essentially immobilized.
“He was practically paralyzed in his position,” she remarked. Dr. Eagan emphasized the criticality of the teenagers’ intervention, stating that the squirrel’s chances of survival would have been non-existent if they had not dedicated their time and effort to bringing it to the clinic.
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They all believe that the squirrel was mistakenly covered in the foam
Eagan holds the belief that the presence of foam insulation was not a deliberate act of harm toward the squirrel. Instead, she thinks that the squirrel likely lived in someone’s garage, basement, or shed and accidentally became stuck in the material.
“It’s likely that someone was trying to seal a gap to prevent drafts, and this little fellow happened to pass through it while the foam was still wet,” she explained. “However, this type of foam hardens rapidly, so it wouldn’t have taken long for the squirrel to find itself in distress.”
Dr. Eagan employed time, patience, and rubbing alcohol to slowly loosen the foam from the animal’s fur. “That foam was as hard as a rock,” she remarked. In cases where the alcohol proved ineffective, she gently combed out the foam, which caused some fur loss and tiny abrasions.
“I was pleasantly surprised by how well the process unfolded.” The squirrel has since been released in the area of the veterinary clinic, within the St. George area. Despite not having treated a squirrel before, Dr. Eagan commended the two teens for their swift response in aiding the poor animal. “I’ve certainly learned the importance of extending a helping hand, particularly when it comes to animals in need,” Pettipas looked back.
This is not an isolated case – squirrels often fall victim to human or other harm
In a more recent story from Dortmund, Germany, a red squirrel found itself trapped in a manhole cover, with only its head protruding. A woman attempted to help but was met with the squirrel’s resistance and bites. Firefighters were called in and used a scarf to calm the animal before lifting the cover. Initially uncooperative, the squirrel eventually escaped unharmed, thereafter vanishing into a nearby tree.
Similar incidents have occurred in the past, highlighting the tendency of squirrels to get stuck in German manhole covers. While some rescues have been successful, others, like the case of Gullyver in Hamburg, sadly resulted in the squirrel’s demise. In Munich, an olive oil-assisted release earned a rescued squirrel the name Olivio.
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