They tried drilling air holes, but that didn't help. Neither did applying cooking oil.
In the end, it took firefighters and the jaws of life to free a black bear from a 10-gallon milk jug stuck on its head.
A Minnesota Department of Natural Resources officer and several others tried their darndest to help the four-legged critter. When boring holes into the container did not good, they tried lathering the animal's furry neck with oil, hoping to slide it off.
That's when they called the local fire department.
A tarp was brought out, and one of the firefighters, who also is a wrestling coach, tried to wrestle the jug off. But the man was no match for the bear.
Those assembled were committed to saving the animal.
"The last thing I wanted to do was put that bear down," resources officer Eric Benjamin told the Grand Forks Herald. "But there wouldn't have been any other options if we couldn't get that can off its head."
So they resorted to what rescue works use on humans trapped by metal. They brought in the jaws of life. While several people held down the bear, the jug was pried off the animal's head.
Sans milk bucket, the bear looked around and ran for the woods.
There were a few drops of water and some leaves in the bottom of jug, and firefighters thought the bear was looking for a drink because of a recent dry spell.
A similar predicament befell the fictional Winnie the Pooh, thought that mishap involved a honey pot.