Fox almost strangled itself after getting trapped in football netting in Horsforth

A fox almost strangled itself after getting trapped in football netting in a garden in Leeds.

By Rebecca Marano
Friday, 7th May 2021, 7:30 pm

A woman found the fox trapped in the netting in her garden in Black Wood Mount in Horsforth on Tuesday May 4.

Animal rescue officer Ollie Wilkes was sent to the scene and could see how the frightened fox had become more entangled in the netting as she tried to free herself.

The netting had also caught on a branch of a bush which she was under, and around the front leg as well as very tight around the neck.

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The fox was rescued after getting trapped in some football netting in a back garden in Horsforth.

Ollie tried to free the feisty fox from the netting but it was so tight he could not safely remove it.

He took the vixen to a nearby vets to have the netting cut free.

Ollie said: “The netting was tight around the fox’s neck and she was in danger of strangling herself. I was really concerned about her.

“I managed to get her free from the bush and the safest thing to do was to take her to a vet to have the netting removed and to have a health check.

“She is now in the care of the RSPCA’s Stapeley Grange Wildlife Centre, in Nantwich, Cheshire, where she will be rehabilitated, as the netting was so tight it is expected to have caused some damage to her neck.

"We believe she had been in this predicament for at least seven hours.

“Once she has been nursed back to health she will be released back into the wild.”

Ollie added how this incident highlights the importance of removing netting from gardens as it is dangerous for wildlife.

He said: “These kinds of incidents are a very stressful situation for an animal, particularly a wild animal, to find themselves in and one which could have been easily avoided.

“Netted fencing and netting used for gardening or in sport can be really dangerous for animals.

“We would urge those using netting for sports to remove and store all nets after their game and put any discarded or old netting safely in a bin. Any garden netting should be replaced with solid metal mesh or people should use wood panels for fencing instead of netting.”

The RSPCA receives hundreds of calls every year to rescue animals - often wildlife - who have become tangled in netting, sport or garden nets.

If you do encounter a wild animal you think needs help, call our emergency line on 0300 1234 999 or visit the website: