A baby muntjac deer is running free again after getting stuck in a metal gate, thanks to RSPCA officer Catherine Strawford’s quick thinking.

The poor creature found himself lodged between two bars in Sutton Coldfield, England. Bystanders thankfully alerted Strawford to the bleeding, distressed animal.

“The deer had obviously been running in the area at night,” Strawford said, “and thought he could get through the railings in the gates but misjudged the gap.”

After initially failing to free the stuck deer, the officer returned with dish soap. For the next 20 minutes, she gently worked him out of his predicament, using the soap as a lubricant.

As it turns out, encounters like these are not unusual for Strawford.

“We tend to be called to help quite a lot of deer trapped in this way and I always try and use washing-up liquid or cooking oil to try to ease them from the railings,” she explained. “It is often much easier and less stressful for the deer than calling on the help of fire and rescue, but of course if I couldn’t have eased him out I would have called for their help.”

When he was finally free, Stawford cleaned his wounds and the deer ran off.

“It was quicker than washing the dinner pots and so much more rewarding,” she said. “It was great to see him happily run off and hopefully he will learn from this lesson.”