"Miss Philly" -- The Kitten That was Wet
(early June 2016)
"Miss Philly" is a stray tortiseshell kitten that was stuck for 3 nights, 30 feet up an oak tree near Philadelphia MS. She made the rescue fairly easy by going to the limb that my rope was on. Vickie, many thanks for your generous donation to the Oktibbeha County Humane Society!
It was late afternoon when a kitty-stuck-in-tree email popped up in my email. I asked the sender to call me, and Vickie was soon on the Kat Fone, describing a kitten that had been stuck for three days in a large oak in her front yard. It was a stray kitten, and Vickie said she would try to find a home for the kitty if I could get it down. I decided to leave immediately for the rescue as I figured that I would have enough daylight if it was a routine rescue. On the way out of town, my wife texted me that there were thunderstorms in the rescue area -- I hoped for the best and kept driving.
The best did not occur, because as I arrived at the house, a heavy rain started with rolling thunder. However, it slowed to a drizzle after about 15 minutes, so I exited the truck and met Vickie at the tree. She pointed out the kitten, who was at 25 feet on a long horizontal limb. I put my climbing rope on a large branch about 5 feet higher and exiting the main trunk at a different angle. My plan was to come around the back of the tree to the limb that the kitty was on. However, my planning was for naught, as after the rope was installed the kitty decided to check out this new thing in her tree and she traveled to the limb that my rope was on.
I hoped this would make things easier -- I was soon at the top of my rope and the kitty was peering over the branch at me. I took off my foot ascender and knee ascender, and stood on a branch under the kitty's branch. I took out some food and tried coaxing the kitty into easy grabbing range. I could just reach her nose with my extended finger, but every time I tried to reach further, she would back away. She seemed only mildly interested in the food, so that was not helping much. I decided to take the Kat Bag off my hand as I thought the smell of other cats might be spooking her. This helped a little, but I still could not get an easy grab. Thunder in the distance began sounding like it was coming closer, and I needed to get the kitty out of the tree. I finally decided to stand on my tip-toes and stretch as far as I could - she tried to back off but I was able to get my fingers over her ears and started scratching them. She liked this, and relaxed into my scratching, allowing me to grab hold of her scruff. She was very lightweight, so it was easy to pull her off the branch and maneuver her into the Kat Bag hanging on my belt. Once on the ground, Vickie and myself put her in a cage with food and water. I named the kitty "Miss Philly" since we were near Philadelphia MS. Here is hoping the kitty finds a good forever home!