PUHI — Scott Pisani got to do a little fieldwork Friday morning, after a dog crossed the road in front of his car with a plastic container stuck on its head.
“I pulled over and a couple of other concerned citizens pulled over,” said Pisani, Kauai Humane Society executive director. “She was skittish and wanted to run, but I was able to get a leash around her and get her in.”
It was a group effort to capture the airedale mix, which also had a small wound on its back.
Once she was contained, the group tried to remove the plastic container from the dog’s head, but to no avail.
The container was removed at KHS’s Puhi shelter by cutting it and then sliding it off of her head.
“They have pretty skinny tops and somehow she got her head in there,” he said.
It’s impossible to tell how long the dog had the container on her head, but Pisani said she could have been stuck for a few days.
Most likely the stray dog was hungry and decided to eat leftover crumbs in the container.
“As soon as we got the thing off, we gave her water and she drank quite a bit of it,” Pisani said. “She did seem exhausted, but it’s hard to know. If it was more than a couple of days, though, she would have been in pretty bad shape.”
The dog did look thin, he said, but that could be due to other factors. She didn’t have a collar or microchip on her when she was found, and no one knows how long she has been a stray on the island.
Questions about temperament were at the forefront of staff members’ minds at KHS when the dog arrived at the facility, and they took extra care when they were cutting away the container.
It’s something that Pisani said the public should remember when they come in contact with an animal trapped in a container, or similar situation.
“This is the type of thing that our officers see often,” Pisani said. “Strays get caught up in things and you never know if they are aggressive or if they’re in such stress that they’ll lash out and bite.”
If the situation isn’t life-threatening for the animal, KHS recommends people who find animals in similar situations take them to a nearby veterinarian or to their facility.
But, if there’s an immediate medical need, Pisani said he expects “most people would do something right then to address the issue.”
“That thing on her head was like the ultimate muzzle,” Pisani said.
KHS is determining the dog’s age and is moving her through the steps at KHS. She might go into a foster home for awhile to allow her wound to heal.
“We can’t wait to put her on the adoption floor,” he said.