'Katie' - the Hot & Tired Kitty

(late July 2015)

Executive Summary

"Katie" is a 6 month old, gray inside kitty who became stuck 35 feet up a white oak tree in Jackson MS. She was there for two days before her owner, Ruby, was able to locate me for help. Katie was too hot & tired during the rescue to do more than wait for me to get to her, and she was happy to be rescued! I would like to thank the ground crew (Ruby, Debra, Marcus, and all of the rest) for their assistance during the rescue!


It was about 2:00 pm on a Sunday afternoon when the Kat Fone meowed. It was Ruby, and her kitty was "Katie", was stuck in a tree in Jackson MS. Ruby had received my contact information from the Mississippi Animal Rescue League after first trying the police and fire departments. I told Ruby that I could help, and would be there by 5:00 pm. I packed up the truck and headed out.

When I arrived, Ruby led me to the tree where Katie was stuck. It was a white oak, and Katie was 35 feet up and at least 8 feet out on the limb from the trunk. Ruby told me that Katie had been near the trunk earlier, but had moved out on the limb. I was also introduced to Marcus, Ruby's son, and Debra, a concerned neighbor. Other members of the neighborhood were also out to help in the rescue in any manner that they could as all were concerned about poor Katie. I installed a climbing line and headed up the tree.

When I reached Katie's limb, I tried coaxing her to the trunk with kitty food. However, Katie looked very hot and tired, and just lay there with her eyes closed -- I have never seen a kitty look so tired in the tree. After calling to Katie for a bit, I realized that she probably did not have the strength to come back to the trunk and that I would have to walk out on the limb to her. I considered using my grab pole, but the number of small limbs around her would have made it difficult. I also did not want to risk scaring her off the limb while I tried to position the loop. I informed Ruby and the rest of the ground crew that I was going to use my spare rope to make another tie-in point about 10 feet higher, and then do the limb walk. After the second rope was installed, I hoisted myself up on the limb and started out. Fortunately, there was a second limb about chest high parallel to Katie's limb that I could hang on with a lanyard to steady myself during the walk. The ground crew held a tarp under Katie to catch her in case she fell.

I inched my way out, and soon I was close to Katie, who actually came in towards the trunk by about a foot as I neared her. The Kat bag was on my right hand, but I would have to use my left hand to grab Katie. I leaned down and gently scratched Katie with my left hand, and then grabbed her scruff and lifted her off the limb. She did not struggle much, so it was not difficult to transfer her to my right hand. Once I had her by the scruff with my right hand, it was easy to pull the Kat Bag over her so that she was fully in the bag. I told the ground crew that Katie was safely in the bag, and then made my way back to the trunk. I lowered Katie and the Kat Bag to the ground, where Ruby took her inside for foot, water, and snuggling. The ground crew (Debra, Marcus and others) stayed beneath the tree for moral support until I was back on the ground. All were happy for the safe rescue!