Showing posts with label stuck in tree. Show all posts
Showing posts with label stuck in tree. Show all posts

Wednesday 2 February 2022

Nine-year-old girl was terrified that her cat Buddy would die stuck up a tree

NEWS AND COMMENT-MOTTINGHAM, LONDON: This is a slightly different version of the classic "cat-stuck-up-a-tree" story. It was New Year's Day and very cold. It was in the evening and dark. Buddy a large, white domestic cat, had been frightened by a dog and the fireworks and had raced up a tree near his home. He refused to come down. He's the cat companion of Zoe, the daughter of Alison Miles.

Buddy safely back on terra firma
Buddy safely back on terra firma. Photo: Alison Miles.

Miles called both the RSPCA and the fire service. Both refused to help. She was disgusted. She said that the RSPCA "didn't even bother coming up".

The fire brigade did turn up but according to her one of the fireman said: "I don't like cats". That was an excuse for not helping, it seems. Another fireman said that the ladder was not tall enough. And therefore, they were unable to help. Another firefighter said that they weren't going to waste water after Miles suggested that they jetted some water at Buddy to force him to jump onto a nearby roof.

The end result was that both the RSPCA and the fire service decided that they couldn't help. In defence, the RSPCA said that they were very busy on that night and the fire service said that they do have people who like cats. They didn't press on and help because they decided that others could do the job.

And others did do the job because the community rallied around and they managed to find a tree surgeon to assist them. He chopped off the branch on which Buddy was huddled. This forced him to fall to the ground where a group of people held a sheet to break his fall. He survived and is now safe.

It was an ordeal for both Alison and her daughter Zoe. Zoe went through a very tough time according to her mother. She couldn't sleep and when Buddy finally made it after three days, she stayed up all night to feed and water him. She was terrified that he would die of a lack of water.

And it was a really cold night. Both Zoe and her mother thought that he wouldn't make it. His meows had become very faint.

Alison said: 

"We thought he was going to be dead by the time we got to him. Even when he was down, we didn't think he'd make it through the night. It was horrendous because he's not my cat, it's my little girl's cat. I had three nights with her crying that he's going to die in the tree – especially with all the fireworks. The fourth night was the worst one; she wouldn't sleep. She stayed up all night cuddling him, making sure he ate and drank. It was heart-wrenching. It's been freezing, really cold, so we were all worried. Thankfully, he's all right now.

A fire service spokesperson said:

“A crew from Eltham attended on Monday and the officer in charge looked at all options. The cat was higher than the traditional ladders carried on fire engines and an aerial ladder would not have been able to pitch close enough to effect a rescue. Firefighters explained the situation to the residents, suggested a tree surgeon might be able to help and left so that they were available for another emergency call. Firefighters are animal lovers and two of the five firefighters who attended the scene are cat owners themselves."

Saturday 27 November 2021

33 people recovered this cat from a tree

Perhaps this is the largest number of people who have rescued a cat from a tree. I'd be surprised if there was another instance in which more people were involved. Hank, an 18 month-old bicolour, ginger tabby normally spends his days in the backyard in a north-east Washington home. Sometimes he enjoys wandering into the garden of nuns who live in the same block reports The Washington Post.

Delores Bushong, who lives in Northeast, hugs her cat Hank after he was rescued from a tree in her neighbor's yard. (Courtesy of Humane Rescue Alliance)
Delores Bushong, who lives in Northeast, hugs her cat Hank after he was rescued from a tree in her neighbor's yard. (Courtesy of Humane Rescue Alliance)

Hank's owner is Dolores Bushong, 74. She adopted him from a rescue centre in the Shenandoah Valley area and has lived in north-east Washington for 30 years. She was amazed at the number of people who came to help.

"It really required a lot of people coming together and trying an incredible number of different things to get Hank out of that tree."

She said it was very frustrating to feel impotent when you love a cat as much as she does after Hank became stuck in a tree for five days with no food or water.

The 33 volunteers included strangers, animal rescue volunteers, friends and neighbours who tried half a dozen different ways to rescue him using baskets, catnip and tall ladders.

Hank got stuck on November 6 of this year (2021). Delores became worried when she called him and there was no response. It got dark and she began to worry some more. Then she heard Hank crying and looked up! She couldn't believe that he climbed a tree because he had never climb one before. Especially one so high.

She believes that Hank became scared of the neighbour's dogs and darted up the tree to escape. The Humane Rescue Alliance took the lead in his recovery. They called the DC Fire Department. They said they couldn't get up the tree with their ladders. Delores then called a construction company enquiring about renting scaffolding but she was told that she would have to book 48 days in advance. She couldn't rent a tall ladder because it was too expensive and difficult to organise.

She then called Casey Trees where she happens to be a volunteer and they sent an expert who said that it wasn't safe to climb up the tree because the branches were not sturdy enough.

One volunteer who turned up suggested that she call the owner of a nearby pest control business which they knew had a tall ladder. The owner of the business Ijeoma Maduforo-Barry said that she could use her 42-foot tall ladder.

Maduforo-Barry said that she had a soft heart and wanted to make sure that the rescue took place successfully. One neighbour produced a can of sardines to try and entice him down. That didn't work. After five days word had got around about the failed rescue attempts.

The customer care team at the Humane Rescue Allowance remembered a rope system and a basket with food inside. The idea is that the cat is enticed into the basket and then the basket is lowered to the ground. This particular method can be effective in cases where the cat is very high up.

As it transpired, the ropes and pulley contraption with the basket on the end worked. They also put some of Dolores slippers and some catnip in the basket to attract him. Hank took the bait and jumped in. I think by then he was keen to get down anyway and his senses told him that it was safe to jump in and that it would at last release him from his self-imposed captivity 40 feet in the air.

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