Three young friends were playing in Cambridge’s Victoria Park when they heard the sound of a barking dog.

Looking around, they didn’t see a dog – which prompted the curious trio to investigate further.

“We heard it coming from the garbage can,” Gills Haskell tells CTV News.

Unable to get past the receptacle’s top layer of garbage, the boys called 911.

Police and animal control officers responded to the park. At the bottom of the garbage can, they found a small wirehaired pointer/Jack Russell terrier crossbreed.

“It looked like he had been in there for a while. He looked really hungry and sad,” says Alex Fullerton, another of the boys who found him.

Bolt cutters had to be used to free the dog, who the boys have named Lucky, from the can.

Lucky – if that becomes his name – is now recuperating at the Cambridge & District Humane Society.

“He’s so outgoing and he’s so friendly,” says OSPCA investigator Tracy Laraway.

“I honestly don’t know what they were thinking, to put a dog in a dumpster to fend for itself. Thankfully those boys called it in.”

It’s not clear who put Lucky in the garbage can, or how long he had been there.

After a few weeks of being nursed back to health, he’ll be put up for adoption.