Jill and Rachel both independently noticed the cat stuck in a tree for one night in a neighbor's yard in Covington, and both were very concerned about it. They did not know the cat, and it did not belong to the neighbor, but Jill recalled seeing the cat in the neighborhood before, because it looks very much like one of her own cats. The fire department came out to see if they could help, but they succeeded only in scaring the cat up to the tip top of the tree, and that is where I found him when I arrived.

I had doubts that I would be able to help this cat, because the tree was pretty small and skinny, and it was clear that I could not go all the way to the top of the tree within arm's reach of the cat. Using the rescue pole was the only option here, but I wasn't sure if I could safely get close enough to reach the cat even with that pole. After I installed my rope as high as I dared, I tested it to see how the tree reacted to my weight, and, while it swayed a bit, the movement was not excessive. I climbed up to the end of my rope and began testing the tree to see if I could climb any higher. I attached another rope to the other stem of the tree for additional support and climbed a little higher to a point where I was within reach of the cat with the rescue pole.

The poor cat was tired and uncomfortable up there with few places to put his feet. It was difficult to get him to move his front feet enough for me to slip the noose under them, but, after a few minutes of trying, I managed to get the noose around his body just behind his front legs. I tightened the noose and lifted the little boy out of the tree and lowered him into the net waiting by my side. I released the noose, but I could not get him to move enough to let me slip the noose off his body. I had to bring him to the ground with the pole loosely inside the bag with him.

Once on the ground, I slipped the noose off of him and handed him to Jill. Jill held him and comforted him inside the net while I retrieved my microchip scanner. I scanned him for a chip and found one. Unfortunately, the microchip company for this chip was one that I knew from past experience would not connect me to the owner quickly. Because I am not a veterinarian, shelter or charitable organization, they will not give me the contact information for the owner, which, by itself, is understandable. What I find unacceptable, however, is that they will not then put me on hold while they call the owner and either connect the owner to me or give them my contact information as other microchip companies do. Instead, they initiate a passive process of contacting the owner which they say may take two hours to complete. Why they choose to keep the owner, cat and me waiting that long, I don't know.

Jill and Rachel agreed to be responsible for the cat while they waited for the owner to contact them, and I packed up and left. I sent the microchip number to Catherine Wilbert at Big Sky Ranch, and, because that is a charitable rescue organization, she was able to get the owner's contact information which she then passed on to Jill and Rachel. The owner came shortly after that and took the poor kitty home, and it was then that we learned that the cat's name is Spot. While the ending was a happy one, it was simply longer and more complicated than it needed to be.

I want to thank Jill, not only for her concern for the cat, but also for providing the only pictures I have of the rescue and the cat. I am also grateful to Rachel for her concern and the property owner for graciously allowing me in his back yard to rescue the cat while other neighbors also gathered to watch.