Staci and her husband, Emmett, were very stressed over their cat, Pepper, who had climbed up a tree in their backyard. Emmett and his son, Evan, did everything they could to help Pepper get down out of that tree, but nothing was quite working. They struggled to devise new ideas every day, and one of them almost worked. They attached several long boards together to form one long board that would reach Pepper, and then they attached a soft carrier to the end of it. They put food in the carrier, propped it up next to Pepper and waited for him to jump into it. Pepper thought about it and got very close to doing it, but could not quite bring himself to actually jumping inside. That is when Staci called Animal Control and was referred to me. By this time, Pepper had spent six nights in the tree.
Pepper was about 25 feet high near the top of a mostly one-sided tree with a dead top. While there were a few limbs above Pepper, I did not trust them with my weight since they were so close to the dead top. The only limb I could use to install my rope was the one Pepper was on. While Pepper stepped out toward the end of the limb and was out of the way, I shot my line over his limb and installed the rope there next to the trunk.
Pepper was described to me as a very friendly and sweet Maine Coon, and he did indeed appear to be friendly. After the difficult rescue of Timber the night before, I was still tired and hoping for an easy rescue this time. Indeed, Pepper gave me no trouble. He met me when I climbed up to him and was happy to see me. I petted his long fur, and he enjoyed having some company.
Emmett told me that Pepper did not like carriers and was unlikely to go into one, but I wanted to try it anyway. To make the carrier more appealing, I opened a can of food to put inside the carrier after giving Pepper a few bites. He was very hungry and very energized to get to that food, but when I put it in the carrier, he stalled. He looked inside and considered it but was reluctant to go inside. I gave him some more time, and he eventually did step inside but kept one back leg on the tree. He cheated by stretching his body as far as he could to get the food without actually stepping all the way inside. He had shown me the limit to which he would go, so I gave up on the carrier and easily put him in the cat bag instead.
I brought Pepper down to the ground, and Evan took him inside. Staci had been watching from the window and was ready to welcome Pepper back home with some food and loving. His litter-mate brother, Prince, was also glad to have him back as shown in this picture which Staci sent to me afterward. They were all very relieved to have Pepper safe at home again, and it was a pleasure for me to have an easy rescue this time for such appreciative and gracious people and their very photogenic cat.