Which Type of Cat Are You Rescuing Today?
Cat Rescue, Part 3
Your cat rescue adventure is about to begin. But it’s not as simple as climbing up to the cat, sticking it into a bag, and coming down to a hero's welcome. You never really know what's going to happen, or how the cat is going to act when you get up to it.
Cats react to climbers in four different ways
There is no such thing as a predictable cat rescue. That's one of the things that makes it so interesting. This is going to be a real-life drama between you and the cat.
There are four patterns of behavior your stuck kitty might fall into. The first cat is well behaved. We’ll call it…
This cat will sit and wait for you to come up into the tree. This is a very easy rescue. You climb up, pull out your bag, and put the cat in. Now all that is remaining is for you to bring it down. Awesome!
But wait. There’s a cat that will make you feel even more welcome. We’ll call it…
This cat is even nicer than the sitter. As you climb up, the cat will climb down toward you. I have even had a couple of rescues where I opened the bag and the cat stepped right in! If you are lucky enough to be greeted this way, you might be labeled a cat whisperer. Revel in the glory, because this doesn’t happen all that often.
Just when you think this business is going to be easy, you run into a more difficult scenario. We’ll call the cat that creates it…
This is the nightmare cat. As you climb up, it climbs up. As you climb out on a branch after it, it climbs out further. In a matter of minutes you can be in no man’s land, balancing on a branch no bigger than your thumb. Every time you take a breath the branch will move. And the cat? It keeps creeping further and further away from you.
There may come a time when you have to abandon the chase. This has happened to me a few times. After a few hours, you lose patience, daylight, or strength. It's time to call it a day. You might not even get paid, if you are asking for money to do this heroic act. Good try, but the cat's going to have to come down on its own.
There is one more type of cat that will give you the blues. This cat is called…
You can probably guess what this cat is going to do. This is the cat that will take the hero element out of a rescue attempt in one mighty leap.
Here's what happens. You get your rope up into the tree and you start climbing. As you climb you start shaking the tree. This usually puts the cat into running mode. As you approach the cat, it might slowly turn around and look at you as if you were a space invader. Then suddenly, it jumps. You’ll hear everyone take in a huge gasp as this fur ball flies through the air with the greatest of ease. The cat that behaves like this is rare, and it will totally humiliate you. Talk about a bummer!
A jumper does not want to be rescued. This cat probably did not meow or make any sound when you started talking to it. A cat that does not vocalize is usually a sign that it climbed up the tree for a purpose, like to get into a birds nest or something. Often it’s a feral cat out on a hunt.
You would be astonished by how far a cat can fall and still not get injured. I've seen cats jump 30 or 40 feet, bounce when they hit the ground, and then shoot out of sight. A couple hours later they are at their food bowl chowing down like nothing happened. Amazing.
So these are the cat characters you might get to meet up in the tree. You never know for sure how a cat is going to react to a rescue attempt. You’ve just got to go up there and deal with what happens. Exciting stuff if you are the person who likes a high drama tree climbing experience.
Next: Your climb up to the cat