"Rocket" - Stuck and Sad

(late April 2019)

Executive Summary

Rocket, a two year old kitty tightly bonded to his special person McKade, had been stuck for three days up a tree in Pearl MS. Rocket was calm during setup and allowed me to nab him with no fuss. Back on the ground, Rocket was reunited with McKade and all ended happily, much to the relief of Leah and Toby (McKade's parents). Cher, many thanks for your donation to the Oktibbeha County Humane Society!


It was late afternoon on a Saturday when I received a text from Leah. Her son's special kitty, 'Rocket', had been stuck for two days in a neighbor's tree and she had been unable to find anyone to help. Since the next day was Sunday, I knew that it was unlikely that any of the usual tree services that did cat rescue in Jackson would be able to help, so I arranged to be there the next morning.

When I arrived, Leah, Toby (Leah's husband) and McKade (Rocket's guy) led me to their backyard -- Rocket was in a tree that was just across a privacy fence and in a neighbor's yard. I could access the tree from Leah's yard, so I told the neighbor that I needed them to keep their dogs inside while I did the rescue. Rocket is normally an inside-only kitty, but he escaped outside, jumped to the top of the fence, and then jumped to the tree when the neighbor's dogs began barking at him. Rocket was calm as I set a rope above his position. During the rope installation, we were joined by a neighbor/friend, Cher, who had also been concerned about Rocket. I was worried that Rocket might jump to the ground in the neighbor's yard, and then not know where to go, so I ascended slowly, sweet talking as I went. Rocket was perched on a small limb that was a good distance from any other limbs, so he had nowhere else to go which was good, at least he could not easily go further up the tree. When I drew near, Rocket sniffed my fingers but did not let me touch him. I offered him some kitty treats which he politely sniffed, but was otherwise disinterested. I climbed a bit higher so that I was above Rocket, used a lanyard to pull myself closer then reached for Rocket. He retreated from my grab and started slipping off the limb but I was able to scruff him before he fell. Rocket did not struggle as I put him in the bag.

Back on the ground, Toby took charge of Rocket and McKade followed him into the house. After I packed my gear, I went into the house and said goodbye to a happy McKade and Rocket (the post rescue photo below was taken by Cher).