"Kit" -- A little Kitten in a Tall Tree

(early December 2018)

Executive Summary

Something spooked "Kit", a 4 month old kitten, 45 feet up a skinny sweetgum tree in Quitman MS. During rope installation, Kit descended to about 20 feet making for an easy rescue. Mary, many thanks for your generous donation to the Oktibbeha County Humane Society!

Details

It was late afternoon on a Monday when I noticed a voice mail on the Kat Fone. It was from Mary in Quitman MS. One of her kittens had been spooked way up a skinny sweet gum tree, could I help? I arranged to be there the next day, and spent the night formulating plans to keep me and the kitty safe in the wiggly tree.

I was met by Mary on arrival and led to the tree, where it was easy to spot Kit crying for help near the top. While I was unloading gear, Kit worked his way down a few feet, relieving some of my concerns about climbing the thin, wiggly stem. We were joined by Mary's sis-in-law, Chelsey, and Veronica, a neighbor, and all settled in to watch the Kitty-Rescue-Show which I hoped would be boring as heck. After a couple of misses with the throwbag launcher, I finally hit a union at 40 feet, which was above Kit's current position. Pulling the rope up spooked Kit, and he began backing down the trunk. I thought for a bit that he would come all the way down to the ground, but he stopped at the point where the trunk split into two main stems, and then began clambering about on small limbs around that union. I shot another throwbag at that union and soon had a climbing line installed. I waited until Kit went out on one of the small limbs away from the trunk, then quickly climbed to the union, preventing Kit from escaping further up the tree if he decided to do that. I should not have worried. Kit was calm and came back to the trunk where he allowed me to nab him with no fuss. Back on the ground, Mary released Kit from the Kat Bag and he was soon exploring around, happy to be back on the ground!