raccoon rescue

People band together to rescue raccoon stuck in roof near Toronto

Toronto raccoons have become a symbol of life in the city but they get up to antics all over the place.

Such was the case when a portly raccoon found itself stuck in a roof just north of Toronto, in Aurora, this week.

Here in Toronto, we have seen raccoons get trapped on condo balconies, they have been found in fireplaces and stuck on bridges.

Aurora resident Bernie Zeesman spotted the trapped trash panda on Oct. 21 just across the street.

"I opened my drapes and 9 a.m., when I start my workday, and it was it was stuck in there," Zeesman tells blogTO.

He thinks the raccoon may have gotten in a hole sometime overnight.

Shingles had come off the roof and Zeesman noticed a hole in the roof the day before. The home had been recently sold and was rented out but he thought the residents had been away for a few days.

"So there was so there was nobody to contact," he says. "So many people were stopping and people called animal control and nobody could do anything because the homeowner has to be involved."

Meanwhile, the poor raccoon was stuck, feet up inside the hole. By the afternoon, two men working in the area, driving in Synergy Energy trucks, finally stopped to help. They climbed on the roof with a ladder but at first couldn't get the poor guy out.

"At first they pulled on its legs and it was really stuck."

The raccoon may have been overweight or pregnant.

"It's clear that this was a big raccoon so we're still not sure if was it pregnant and maybe it was looking for a place to go have its babies."

Luckily, people came by with things to help.

"One of the neighbors brought out some olive oil and some Dawn dish soap, [they were] literally pouring it over trying to lube it up."

Another neighbour brought a children's hockey net to protect the workers in case the raccoon attacked.

Eventually, they got a really good grip and they wiggled the raccoon out.

"It was not happy but it was probably too tired."

It had been in the roof for more than six hours and had trouble walking when it was finally released. He believes the raccoon eventually made it off the roof. He later noticed the roof hole was patched up.

Zeesman says raccoons also tried to get into his roof a while back but he had it quickly repaired. The raccoon problems seem to be migrating north.

"I think it's still worse in Toronto for sure but they're definitely out of here."

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