In the forests of Truckee, California, summer is long gone and chilly autumn mornings are a sign that winter is on the way.
So for a mother bear and her cub, a quick meal from a local dumpster may have seemed like a quick way to fatten up before winter set in.
Had the dumpster been locked, the bears wouldn’t have found themselves in such a precarious situation, but this dumpster was unlocked and rife with food that must have appealed to the two hungry bears.
While climbing inside the dumpster was easy enough, unfortunately for baby bear, climbing out was another story. The lid to the dumpster fell down hard, leaving baby bear trapped among the garbage.
When Truckee Police Sgt. John Mon Pere arrived on the scene, the mother bear was watching from a distance.
Mon Pere called out to her to say hello and chatted with the mother bear like they were old acquaintances, reassuring her that he was only there to help.
“You’re pretty,” Mon Pere told the mother bear, who remained perched on the hill above. “We’re gonna help baby get out,” he said.
Mon Pere climbed on top of the dumpster next to the baby bear and heaved the lid open. The mother bear could have come charging down the hill in a rage, but she remained at her post, watching and waiting.
“Remember, I’m a friend,” Mon Pere called out to the bear.
As soon as the lid was opened, the baby bear climbed out and scampered back up the rocky hill. Onlookers cheered and were delighted to see the bears reunited.
Mon Pere slammed the lid shut again to avoid any repeat performances by either party.
“We seem to have our own bear whisperer at our department,” Truckee Police wrote on Facebook. “Sgt. Mon Pere has a knack for rescuing our bears, as you’ve now seen 2 rescues caught on video in a few weeks time!”
The post ended with a reminder for everyone to be #BearAware and keep garbage containers locked.
“Help keep our bears wild!” Truckee Police wrote.
The department’s actions have been well received by locals, who are thankful for a police force that has a kind heart towards animals.
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