In a remote wooded area in Suwałki, Poland, a group of construction workers had a chance encounter that ended up saving a life—a furry, four-legged life, that is.
It was a spring day in May 2019 when the workers heard the desperate, relentless cries of an animal in the distance, as The Dodo reported.
Following the noises, the workers came across a mess of fur and solid black tar caked together in a jumble on the ground. It was a small brown dog that was clearly trapped in a tar patch that had cooled and hardened. It was desperately crying for help, unable to move, let alone free itself.
The puppy was too firmly stuck, and the workers realized they lacked the faculties to free him—he was a boy—and so, they called Joanna Godlewska, a local animal rescue worker from the Niczyje Animal Foundation, for assistance.
When Godlewska arrived, the sight of the helpless puppy struck a chord in her heart.
“When I finally arrived and saw a dog lying in the tar, tears came to my eyes,” she told The Dodo.
The group of would-be helpers surmised that the puppy had been abandoned (illegally) in the wooded area and that he had probably sought warmth by lying down in a puddle of still-warm tar, which then cooled and stuck to the entire left side of his body: fur, legs, head, and all, leaving him hopelessly paralyzed.
Luckily, he was still able to yelp.
It was unclear how long the puppy, whom they named Farcik, had been exposed to the elements like this, though it was clear that he wouldn’t last much longer, and he seemed to be losing all hope.
However, even with Godlewska’s help, it was not enough to free him; and they were soon joined by a local fire department crew, who were able to carefully cut away most of the tar gripping Farcik’s fur. They used cooking oil to loosen the rest.
“He understood that we were saving him,” Godlewska recalled later. And as they did so, the pup’s flagging demeanor turned into a glimmer of hope.
After about an hour, finally, he was free of the tar.
The rescuers then rushed Farcik to a veterinarian clinic for treatment. Despite some raw wounds on his face, the puppy was mostly in good health. However, removing all the tar that had gotten deeply embedded in his fur and skin would take a lot more time and effort.
They scrubbed away as much of the black stuff as possible on the first go, but it took several more sessions to deep cleanse the sticky substance entirely. Yet, each cleaning saw Farcik’s mood improve bit by bit.
“He feels better and better,” Godlewska said.
Afterward, Godlewska expressed her thanks for everyone who made Farcik’s rescue possible. “I just wanted to save him,” she said. “Thank you to everyone who saved this dog.”
After his recovery, the next step in Farcik’s journey was revealed in an update posted on Niczyje Animal Foundation’s Facebook page. “The toddler has an amazing home!” they wrote, referring to Farcik, as translated from Polish. They also shared a few lovely photos of Farcik enjoying walks in the park and snuggling up on a nice, cozy bed in his new home.
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