Dog with head stuck in jar rescued
Published on: Saturday, April 03, 2021
By: Dr Roslee bin Haji Abbas
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HElping Animals Rescue Team (Heart)

RESIDENTS in a Tebobon neighbourhood in Menggatal were shocked and concerned when they spotted a stray dog aimlessly wandering their neighbourhood streets – with a large plastic jar stuck firmly on his head. The dog had put its head inside a discarded plastic container looking for food but was unable to pull it back. He was just so desperate to find something to eat. It’s really tragic. It started running around in agitation carrying its head trapped in the plastic jar/container.

They had been hearing the high-pitched screams of a dog whose head stuck in a large plastic container, and had been unable to eat or drink for five days. For the five days that he had his head stuck in the container, residents called for help from the fire brigade department.

Firefighters came to check on the dog multiple times, but were unable to free his head. And every time they tried to catch hold of the dog, he would run away. The dog was terrified and was running helter-skelter in the Tebobon village area. This made it difficult for the firefighters to catch him. According to the informer, Eddy, they had other calls to attend to and went away without rescuing the dog.

Having his head and jaws stuck in the plastic jar /container meant he was unable to eat nor drink. He went hungry and thirsty during this time.  If someone tied you up and went to go beating you or attacking you, there is nothing you can do. Same thing with the dog. If another dog came up and attacked him he couldn’t do a thing, or eat or drink.

No longer able to bear the yelps of the dog, one of the concerned Muslim residents, Eddy, contacted Heart, and said that it seemed the poor dog, later named Afzal, had been in this predicament for around five days. The pooch barely managed to breathe through the plastic jar/container. Afzal was understandably terrified, and therefore refused to let anyone get close enough to help. He appeared emaciated and was likely one of many dogs abandoned in the neighbourhood.

The rescue operation by the Heart team started around noon on Sunday, March 28. First, the dog Afzal was located at Taman Tebobon, where it was cowering. He was terrified and distressed, and kept dodging our rescue team. When we began to rescue, we ensured that the dog was not chased. No dog in such a situation should run much as the oxygen level inside the plastic container/jar is very low and can result in death.  After a 15 minute trailing the dog, he seemed to have realised help had arrived and he lay in wait to get his head out. After we managed to catch hold of him, around 3pm, we used scissors to remove the plastic jar/container from the dog’s neck. We cut open the bottom of the plastic jar/container, creating an air passage for the pooch and proceed tearing open the container which was stuck around the dog’s head. Within 15 minutes of being caught, the dog’s head was finally freed. The dog’s neck had injury marks indicating that the pooch was trying to pull out its head from the plastic jar/container but in vain.

He was extremely dehydrated and ravenous by the time he was rescued, and our Heart team immediately rushed to give the pooch food and water. He was so hungry he devoured the canned dog food and kibbles in no time. He had a skin disease and a few lesions, but otherwise he was in good condition.

The dog could have died slowly without food and water. We should realise that faulty waste disposal severely harms animals and wildlife. We are reminding people not to litter because items as plastic jars/containers are curiously magnets for critters. Not only is littering terrible for the environment, but our pets, homeless animals and wildlife get curious and sometimes that curiosity can lead to serious injuries, or even death, all because of trash people discard. We hope this is a lesson for people not to leave rubbish on the streets. The waste products can cause many problems for animals.

Imagine the trauma he had to go through simply because some irresponsible idiot threw away a plastic jar/container. He’s not aggressive but was traumatised by the incident. Dogs in such a predicament cannot hold on for long. It is a miracle that the “plastic jar/container” dog in Tebobon, Menggatal survived the ordeal. We took Afzal back to our foster home to get him the care he needed. He’s not aggressive and we can tell he loves people. Afzal still needs some time to heal and gain back his confidence, but after that, he will be more than ready to find his loving forever home. Thankfully, the story has a happy ending.

We receive NO government funding and rely on the support and kindness from our community, private donations and charity bazaar to complete our mission. Heart does not euthanise animals to make space to house others. We are a no-kill animal welfare group and work to preserve life whenever possible.

We rely on donations from people like you who are willing to spend their hard-earned money to help animals in dire needs.

If you would like to help to pay for our medical veterinary bill and other expenses please send your money to:


Account no.

70 3762569 4


And every ringgit helps! Thank you in advance for your generous, big and small (and no donation is too small).!

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