Lucy and Two Unknowns

No, it's not an algebraic equation, and it's not the name of a rock band. It's just the story about three different rescues for three unrelated cats. First, was Lucy, the five-month-old gray tabby in Baton Rouge who presented a formidable challenge to me. Lucy climbed all the way to the top of a tree that was unsafe for me to climb, and there were no other trees close by that I could climb instead. She is circled in red in this picture, but she was actually a bit higher when I first arrived. The branch she was on had a significant hollow at it's base (green circle), and I feared it would not support my weight. The branch closest to it also suffered the same defect and also could not be used to climb. There was nothing there that would allow me to get close to Lucy safely, so I hauled up an "elevator" to her. The elevator is just a carrier with the top removed and food inside. I hauled it up to the fork just below Lucy, and that was as high as I could get it. I hoped Lucy would climb down to it and jump inside for the food, and then I could lower her to the ground. With some coaxing, Lucy did indeed climb down to that fork, but, instead of jumping inside the carrier, she continued to climb past it slowly and nervously all the way down to the base of the branch where the hollow is. That was as far as she could go, but I easily climbed up to her at that point and brought her down. Lucy deserves all the credit for her rescue.

The second rescue was for an unknown, long-hair tortie that appeared in a tree on Virginia's property in Denham Springs and began crying for help. The tortie appeared to be friendly, but when I climbed up to her, she got scared, climbed higher and walked out a very long limb. It would have been unwise to follow her at that point, because she was now over some power lines, and the risk of falling was much greater. I tried and failed to win her friendship, so I decided to set a trap in the tree for her instead. After setting the trap, I left and waited for her to go into it. A few hours after dark, I got the call that she was in the trap. I went out right away to bring her down in the dark, because I did not want her to be in that uncomfortable trap uncovered all night.

The next day, it was another unknown cat crying in a tree, but this time it was in Saucier, Mississippi in a wooded area across the street from a veterinary clinic. Hannah, who works at the clinic, noticed the cat and tried to find a way to get it down but failed until she found me. I went out there after the cat's second night in the tree and found it crying pitifully in a crooked Pine tree. When I shot my weighted bag into an adjacent tree well above it in preparation for installing my rope, the cat decided to come down. He did a great job of backing down the tree in a controlled way all the way to the ground. At this point, I was getting very concerned about him running off into the woods and never being seen again. As he jumped down the last couple feet on the ground, I could see him debating what to do. His first instinct was to run into the woods away from the people, but he looked at us long enough to see what we would do. I calmly knelt down and called to him and then opened a can of food. Once he heard that can open, he made a beeline straight to me. He knew that sound well. As he ate, I petted him and then pulled the carrier closer. I slowly moved the food inside the carrier, and he readily stepped all the way inside to get it. Hannah took him inside the clinic to assess him and check him for a microchip. He had no microchip, and Hannah was unable to find the owner, but she found a new, good home for him.