Exhausted young fox rescued after going over the wall at Seaham Harbour

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A young fox who fell into the sea after going over the harbour wall has been returned to the wild thanks to a joint rescue effort.

The unfortunate creature, who is thought to have been about six-to-seven-months old, was spotted going in and out of the water at Seaham Harbour Marina on Friday, October 6, after becoming trapped by the advancing tide.

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The RSPCA was called to provide assistance after Seaham Harbour Dock Company worker Sam Tuck had gone onto the beach and confined the exhausted animal in a large bag.  

The fox. Picture issued by RSCPAThe fox. Picture issued by RSCPA
The fox. Picture issued by RSCPA

Weak and soaking wet, he was collected by one of the charity’s inspectors, Rowena Proctor, and taken immediately to Wrights’ Vets in Birtley.

There were initial concerns he might have damaged a leg during the fall, but an examination revealed no serious or lasting injuries.

Inspector Proctor said: “He was a tiny little thing, small enough to fit in one of my cat carriers.

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"We think he’d fallen in the water the night before and after trying to swim back had become exhausted and disoriented.

"When I arrived, he was lying in the bag looking bedraggled and more or less motionless, and I was concerned at the time that he might not pull through.

“Despite the height at which he must have fallen, he thankfully hadn't sustained any serious injuries, he just needed warming up, a good meal in his tummy and some time to rest and time to recuperate, all of which he received thanks to the wonderful team at Wrights’ Vets.

"A huge thank you also goes out to Sam Tuck and his colleagues at Seaham Harbour Dock Company for their care and compassion at a crucial time. Lots of people pulled together to help this little fox and we’re all so pleased it’s resulted in a happy outcome for him.”


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The fox was released and reunited with his family on Friday night by Rowena’s colleague, inspector Helen Nedley, to an area nearby where they are known to live.  

Although they can and do swim, foxes usually prefer to stay on land.

If you find sick, injured or orphaned wild animals please visit the RSPCA’s website for advice. 

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