Bystanders help coyote pup who got stuck in cactus

Bystanders help coyote pup who got stuck in cactus

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Photos by Gwen Maxwell Photos by Gwen Maxwell
SUN CITY, Ariz. -

It was a tough day for a little coyote pup who went head-first into a cholla cactus.

The little guy was covered in cholla clumps when he was found by a Sun City woman who was walking through her neighborhood. We talked to the woman who spotted him.

"There he was rolling around and around, he was covered with cholla cactus," says Gwen Maxwell. "It was so distressing to me, I knew I had to do something."

The pup had spines all over its face and body and could barely walk.

Maxwell's house backs up to the first hole of Pebblebrook Golf Course. She enlisted the help of a neighbor who started making calls -- then two golf course workers showed up to lend a helping hand.

"No I've never seen something like that," says greenskeeper Jose Soto.

"We were just terrified with what we saw and we just had to act fast," says worker Shawn Bordine.

Jose Soto help the pup down while Bordine took the thorns out with needlenose pliers.

"We just did what we could, pulled off the big ones first then did the small ones," says Bordine. "He was being pretty strong, he knows we were there to help and he didn't snip at us in any way. He was pretty good about it."

They were able to remove all of the cactus spines and help the pup find its mother, who was watching nearby.

"Everyone was conscious that the mother was knew what was going on," says Maxwell.

"These two men did such a remarkable job and handled him with such care and worked and worked until they had all of the thorns out."

The little coyote and his family ran back into the desert.

"I'm just thankful we were in the right spot at the right time and we could do something," says Bordine.

"I was really relieved," added Maxwell.

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