Ferreted away: fire service rescues polecat in a fix

A ferret trapped in metal fencing in Ossett was rescued by the RSPCA after having to be cut free by the fire service.

Whoops was 'too chubby' to be freed

RSPCA inspector Charly Wain attended the emergency call to find the adult male ferret tangled in the mesh fencing at the DVLA centre on Mothers Way, last Tuesday.

Inspector Wain said: “There’s no way the poor little ferret could have got out on his own, and he was so badly tangled up, I knew I would have to call the fire service for help.

“They arrived and were soon able to cut a section from the fence that the ferret, now named Whoops, was stuck in.

“However, as he was clearly in pain, I took him to straight to Abbey House Vets in Morley, still attached to the section of mesh, so they could remove him safely.''

He is sedated before being cut from the mesh

Once they arrived, a vet managed to start untangling Whoops, but after getting him out of one hole, it became clear he was firmly stuck in the rest. After sedating him, they finally managed to cut him free. He was given some pain relief - but he is now recovering well.

Vet Laura Smith, who treated Whoops, said: “This was such an unusual situation, I’ve never seen anything like it. I think Whoops had gone through the fence and got stuck, but instead of backing out he had turned and gone the other way and become even more stuck.”

“It was easy enough to carefully ease his head out of the first bar, but the second was firmly stuck around his middle as he is really quite a chubby ferret! Between me and vet nurses Gillian Kerrod and Candice Dyson, we managed to cut him out completely once he was anaesthetised. All in all it took around 15 minutes, and after we monitored him overnight he was doing so well we released him back to the RSPCA to take him to a rehoming centre.”

The ferret, a neutered adult male, is in good health, and is thought to be a stray as nobody has come forward to claim ownership of him. He has been taken to South Cheshire Ferret Rescue where he is now looking for a new home.

Anyone wishing to find out more about rehoming Whoops can