"Your cat's had an adventure"
RSPCA: 'Your cat's had an adventure. Can you please contact us to let us know he got home safely?'
It was back on the 15th of June that the one-year-old Freddy headed through the cat flap with a mysterious note attached to his collar. A paper message saying simply: "Call us… Your cat's had an adventure."
"An adventure", it turned out, that the young cat had only just managed to escape by a whisker.
Cat on a wire
In fact for the last 18 hours Freddy had not only been precariously balanced 25 feet up in the air but been clinging to overhead cables with a live electrical wire just inches from his head.
Facing either a 25 foot drop or electrocution Freddy was luckily spotted by local Amesbury resident Terry Davies:
"Initially it was perched on the grey box on the side.
"I kept my four dogs inside to give the cat a chance to come down without being scared, and even propped up a ladder against the pole and held a dog basket for the cat to scramble down into. But although the basket was only a few feet away the cat wouldn't move."
But during the night Freddy did move so that by 9:00 am, the next morning, not only was he still up the pole but balanced right at the top of it and clinging onto the wires. It was then that Terry decided to call in the fire service.
Three hours after making the call not only were the Wiltshire Fire and Rescue on the scene but the RSPCA and engineers from Southern Electric had also swung into action.
With it becoming more and more clear that the tabby-and-white cat wouldn't be able to stay where he was, for too much longer, it fell to the electricity board engineer using a fibreglass ladder and specialist rubber gloves to grab the cat:
"When I got to site the cat was sitting on one of the overhead wires with a live wire just inches from its head," said Richard Sewell, the engineer from Southern Electric.
"I climbed up the pole and, using specially insulated equipment, I was able to get the cat and bring him down safely."
With a thankfully un-shocked moggy returned to ground level RSPCA Animal Collection Officer, Sue Brooks, checked him over before letting him go:
"Freddy seemed to be unharmed, so I let him loose with a little note saying 'Your cat’s had an adventure. Can you please contact us to let us know he got home safely?' His owner got in touch soon afterwards.
"We don't know why Freddy shot up the pole, whether he was frightened or it was just a case of curiosity – and we all know the saying about what it can do – and in this instance very nearly did!"
For anyone who is worried about a cat that appears to be stuck whilst climbing, the RSPCA's advice is that if the cat is not in danger and the weather is fair, to leave the animal to make its own way down. A rescue attempt may frighten the animal causing it to climb higher or even fall.
However if the animal appears to be in distress, or has not come down after 48 hours, you should call the RSPCA Cruelty and Information Line on 0300 1234 999.
last updated: 26/06/2008 at 13:21
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