Winnipeg's toilet squirrel is a bit baffling to a local plumber.

Gary Kehler says it's possible the squirrel that ended up struggling to get out of a St. James woman's toilet this week got in there after falling down the sewer stack on the roof.

"Mischievous little buggers, they can come down the pipe or whatever. You have your bypass pipes coming on a vertical and they could slip inside," he said.

But he says it's also possible it crawled up through sewer lines as the city worked on them.

Kehler says what's surprising is the fact the animal didn't drown either way.

"It's unbelievable how he would have made his way through the toilet because a toilet is usually got trap, has an L trap in it and there's water in it so he really must have pushed his way through."

Kehler says the best way to prevent these things from happening is to put a screen on your roof sewer stack.

Rescued with barbecue tongs

Angela Campbell found the squirrel floundering in her toilet early Wednesday morning after hearing a strange noise coming from the bathroom of her St. James-area home.

When she opened the lid of her toilet, she found a small, drenched squirrel grasping the sides of the bowl.

She grabbed a pair of barbecue tongs, raised the rodent out of the water and plopped it into the bathtub.

She gave it a quick bath then picked it up with the tongs again and placed the squirrel on her patio to set it free.

It scurried up the stucco exterior of Campbell’s house, then found its way to a fence post with some tree coverage and sunlight to dry off. 

Campbell said she has no idea how the squirrel got in her toilet but said the city’s water and waste department was cleaning water mains on her street at the time.