A member of the public came to the aid of the stuck squirrels
Vets Now’s Middlesbrough clinic welcomed some interesting visitors recently as they treated four baby squirrels who had got their tails in a tangle.
A walker made the unusual discovery in woodland near Wynyard and called the RSPCA.
In order to avoid being bitten by their sharp teeth, RSPCA inspector Clare Wilson decided to take the squirrels to our Middlesbrough clinic where our staff were on hand to help with detangling.
Clare said: “The vet nurses put towels over the squirrels so they felt safer. They seemed to realise we were trying to help them as they stayed quiet while the vet worked to untangle them.”
Under the twigs and leaves which had also become tangled in the mass of fur, they found the tails had been plaited together.
Although the original caller thought the squirrels had been deliberately tied together, it’s not clear how they ended up in this state.
Clare added: “It’s impossible to know for sure how they came to be in such a predicament. I think they must have become entangled in the nest and, maybe in their haste to get free, jumped over each other effectively plaiting the tails so they were completely stuck. I am so glad they were found in this remote area of woodland and that we could step in to help.”
Thankfully, the vet and vet nurses were able to free the squirrels uninjured. They’re now being looked after at a local vet until they can be transferred to a wildlife centre, and hopefully they’ll be released back into the wild soon.
Clare said: “We find wildlife in some very strange predicaments but this sounded particularly odd, and it definitely was!”
Grey squirrels are a very common sight across the UK. They were introduced to the UK from North America in the 1800s and have overtaken our native red squirrels in most of the country. They are considered an invasive non-native species due to their impact on the red squirrel population and the damage they cause to forestry.
The Vets Now clinic in Middlesbrough — where the squirrels received treatment — was recently rated as “outstanding” in the delivery of emergency and critical care by the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons.
It’s one of a nationwide network of Vets Now clinics and pet emergency hospitals across the UK that are open through the night, seven-days-a-week, and day and night on weekends and bank holidays, to treat any pet emergencies that may occur.
All of Vets Now’s premises have a vet and vet nurse on site at all times.