UPDATE: Aug. 15 ― The squirrel, originally named Karl-Friedrich, has been found to be female and renamed Pippilotta, Deutsche Welle reports. An animal rescue agency is caring for Pippilotta and preparing her to be reintroduced to the wild in the near future.
A man in Germany may not have been in danger when he called the cops on a baby squirrel chasing him, but it all worked out for the best for the furry suspect.
Emergency services in the city of Karlsruhe got a call Thursday from a man panicked that the tiny animal wouldn’t stop following him around, The Guardian reported. Police arrived at the scene, where the squirrel ultimately ended the pursuit by lying down and going to sleep.
It turned out that the squirrel was the one who actually needed help, police said.
“It often happens that squirrels which have lost their mothers look for a replacement and then focus their efforts on one person,” police spokeswoman Christina Krenz told The Guardian.
The squirrel, now named Karl-Friedrich, is in the care of an animal rescue center. Karlsruhe police posted a statement on Facebook about the critter, including several adorable photos. The department wished Karl-Friedrich the best.
The baby squirrel chase is the second police-involved squirrel incident to make international headlines this summer. Last month, a London woman called police after she heard loud noises in her home and suspected a burglar. The intruder turned out to be a “rogue squirrel,” according to law enforcement.
Although authorities in the German case said the squirrel did need assistance, wildlife experts generally warn that before intervening with a squirrel you suspect is orphaned, you should do your best to make sure the creature truly requires help. The Wildlife Center of Virginia, which gets hundreds of calls annually about supposedly orphaned squirrels, published this handy guide to help determined whether such an animal really needs help and what to do if so. When in doubt, contact a local wildlife rescuer, rehab center or animal control.