We were contacted about this dog because of our past work with this breed, but this is just not a dog we can take on right now for a number of reasons. I will share his story and photos in the hopes someone has the knowledge and heart to save this boy.
According to officials with Riverside County Animal Services, the black and white male Labrador-shepherd mix was found roaming as a stray in the Sky Valley area on Thursday, September 19th. A concerned resident reported the strange sight and two officers showed up to assist the pooch.
The officers saw the dog's head was stuck inside a large, cylindrical plastic jug. You may have seen a similar container at the grocery store filled with snack items like pretzels or cheese balls.
"Plastic containers, especially ones that used to have food in them, are curiosity magnets for critters," said Riverside County Animal Services Commander Rita Gutierrez. "This is another major reason why people shouldn't litter, and of course, why people shouldn't let their pets roam freely."
Lt. Luis Rosa and Officer Gerald Duchene cuaght up with the dog along Lyons Boulevard. According to the release, Lt. Rosa was forced to use a tranquilizer dart because the dog would scurry away every time they would approach him. Once he was sedated, officers were able to safely remove the jug from his head.
Veterinarians at the Coachella Valley Animal Hospital in Thousand Palms examined the dog and he appeared healthy, despite having his head stuck in a plastic jug in temperatures that reached 105 degrees. Animal Control said he wouldn't have lasted much longer in the heat, and obviously wouldn't have been able to eat or drink anything if they weren't alerted to the situation.
"We do not know how long he had that thing on his head, but it couldn't have been a comfortable situation in this terrible heat," Lt. Rosa said. "We were very happy to be able to help him out of a jam."
Commander Rita Gutierrez said she once had to pull a child's toy teapot off a skunk's head. "Not only is littering terrible for the environment, but our pets and wildlife get curious and sometimes that curiosity can lead to serious injuries, or even death, all because of the trash people discard.
According to officials with the Coachella Valley Animal Campus, he is extremely fearful and needs a experienced rescue or dog owner.
This boy is at the Coachella Riverside shelter - RCDAS.ORG
His impound number is A1142708 and he can be found online HERE. Their phone number is (760) 343-3644. Address is 72050 Petland Place, Thousand Palms, CA.
According to a fellow rescuer, this dog is back in isolation again because he is so fearful. The shelter staff have been working with him, but he really needs a miracle (or a guardian angel).