The "Munch" is Tree Manacled!

(mid June 2018)

Executive Summary

"Munch" was stuck 50 feet up a sweet gum tree for two days in Benton MS. Angela and Emily (Munch's person) both contacted me after other rescue sources failed. I had to climb a nearby stem in order to reach Munch, who was on a skinnier stem. While pulling Munch's stem towards me, he became scared and attempted to go higher. Fortunately, I was able to grab Munch before he climbed out of reach. Angela, many thanks for your generous donation to the Oktibbeha County Humane Society!


It was mid-morning and I noticed a voice mail on the Kat Fone. It was from Angela; her adult daughter's family kitty (Munch) had been stuck in a tree for two days and nobody could help them. Would I be able to help? About the same time, I also received text and Facebook messages from Emily (Munch's owner) about the situation. I contacted them and arranged to be there later that afternoon.

When I pulled up, I was met by Emily and her two teenage children, Minley (daughter) and Marito (son). They were all concerned about poor Munch, who was stuck in a sweet gum next to the driveway. He was about 50 feet up on a stem that looked too skinny to climb. However, there was a climbable stem right next to it. I unloaded my gear, and soon had a rope established on the neighboring stem at about Munch's height. I geared up and began climbing. I kept a safety lanyard on the trunk as I was unsure about the tie-in point stability, and this slowed my climbing. When I reached the tie-in point, I was even with Munch. By leaning far over and pushing out, I could reach Munch enough to scritch his nose but it was not close enough for a grab. I pulled out my DMM Captain Hook and hooked it to Munch's stem, next to his perch. I slowly started to pull Munch's stem towards me, but the stem movement frightened Munch and he began climbing higher. With some desperation in my voice as I did not want any net or rescue pole drama, I begged Munch to stop and shook some dry kitty treats at him, but he ignored me. Fortunately, Munch is a terrible climber and only climbed a couple of feet before hanging up in some small branches. I was able to pull Munch's stem close to mine while he was tangled up but I still was going to have to stand up on the stem to reach him.

I put on my Kat bag and made ready. As I pulled and stood on his stem, the extra stem movement frightened Munch enough that with a burst of energy, he started climbing higher. I quickly reached up and scruffed him before he climbed out of grabbing distance. I pulled him off the limb and towards me, with Munch wiggling and crying. I felt him slipping from my grasp, so I quickly moved him to my lap where I re-established the scruff lock and then bagged him. It was a close call, because if Munch had climbed out of my reach it would have meant net and rescue pole drama. Back on the ground, Emily took Munch in for food and water. As I was packing up, Angela arrived and was relieved to find that Munch was out of the tree. All ended happily!