Cat Astrophes

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Cat-astrophes!
10th July 2017

By Karen Pickwick



It’s a well-known fact that cats can get themselves stuck…a lot!

Whether scaling a 50ft tree with no escape route, squeezing themselves into tiny gaps, or falling down a hole they can’t get out of, some cats can get themselves into some very tight spots.

They are naturally curious and inquisitive animals but some cats are better than others at navigating the hazards that may pop up along the way.

On average the RSPCA receives a call to its National Control Centre about a cat every three minutes and receives more calls about cats than any other animal.
New figures reveal that since the start of this year the RSPCA has been called to 2,819 trapped cats.

The largest number of rescues were cats ‘trapped up’ something, with 1,488 in total from January to June.

Rescues can be a tricky business and require specialist equipment to be able to safely free an animal from a tight spot without injury as well as avoiding a nasty nip or bite in the process.

RSPCA superintendent Tim Minty said: “There is a range of equipment needed for these particular rescues. The animal in itself will be frightened and its behaviour is most likely to be unpredictable because of the situation it’s in and the fact they don’t know the person trying to rescue them.”

Some of the challenges cats face can leave some owners understandably concerned or worried about their safety.

But for most cats going outside is important for keeping them happy and healthy, says Alice Potter, the RSPCA’s cat welfare expert.

“Unfortunately we can't always be there to supervise our cats when they are out and about to make sure they are safe but there are some steps we can take,” she said.

“Microchipping your cat is the most reliable way to identify them and gives you the best chances of being reunited if they become lost.
 
One plucky cat rescued last month was Lola, (pictured above) who had got herself wedged 8ft up a chimney and was freed after a four-hour rescue operation by the RSPCA and Merseyside Fire Service.
 
Lola’s worried owner contacted the RSPCA after hearing the kitten making noises inside the chimney. She had not long been adopted and, feeling timid in her new home, sought a place to hide – behind the fireplace.
 
“From there, she had somehow managed to climb inside the chimney – about 8ft up it,” said RSPCA animal welfare officer Matt Brown, who went to rescue Lola from the house in in Liverpool.