Bear cub rescued after head gets stuck in cookie jar


(New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection)

RINGWOOD, N.J. — A 6-month-old black bear cub had to be rescued from 40 feet up in a tree after his head got stuck in a cookie jar, according to

The 28-pound cub proved to be challenging for rescuers as he became wedged in a tree, his head stuck in a large animal crackers jar that had been tossed out in the trash.

“He was trying to eat what remained in the jar and pulled the jar over his head,” said Larry Ragonese, spokesman for the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection. “He got spooked and went up into the tree.”

Ragonese credited the help of police, firefighters and two members of the DEP Division of Fish & Wildlife with rescuing the bear from what could have been a tragedy.

Firefighters used a bucket truck to climb up and assist the bear.


(New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection)

With the help of local police, the state workers arranged netting in case the bear were to fall to the ground. Firefighters promptly cut the jar off the bear’s head. The bear had to be tranquilized due to its troubled state, Ragonese said.

After at least two hours stuck in the tree, the bear cub was dehydrated and was dunked in cool water to revive him.

The bear cub is now in the care of a local rehabilitator and is expected to recover.

Ragonese said although incidents like this are rare, wildlife officials have seen such things before. He added the problem goes back to homeowners not taking care of their trash that invites animals like bears to come around looking for a snack.

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