It’s been something of a fondly remembered formulaic story, having firemen or similar emergency responders – or superheroes in fiction – being called in to coax or carry a cat down from a tree or some suitably tall structure. Such a practice has long been discontinued by these services in light of certain discoveries about cat behavior, that they’re just as capable of getting themselves down from their lofty predicament as they were in getting themselves up there in the first place. However, there does come a time when the situation is for keeps, and the animal in question really doesn’t have the ability to get down to the ground under their own power or will. This article is such a case.
As told by the Associated Press, utility linemen from the Pacific Gas and Electric Company found themselves responding to the old emergency call last Tuesday November 22 in Fresno, California. The Perez family needed help getting their household cat named Fat Boy, down from a power pole not far from their house. If it sounds mundane to you, then consider these facts. First, the pole was 45 feet high; second, it held high-tension power lines; and finally, poor Fat Boy had been stuck atop it for nine straight days before the Perez family decided to call it in.
The cat’s immediate person, 14-year old Andrew Perez, believes that he may have been chased by one of the neighborhood dogs the week before, and was spooked into shooting up the electrical post only to be stranded when the adrenaline wore out. “We were calling his name,” tells Andrew. “And he was looking at us, and he’d just meow.”
Calls to the local tree service which may have been able to do something failed. Ultimately the PG&E were summoned to the scene, it being their power line. Spokesman Denny Boyles describes the situation from their end. “It’s not a simple thing to climb a power pole and get a cat down. The first thing we have to do is de-energize the [12,000-volt] line. The safety of the two guys who went up on the pole and the crew member on the ground has to be our first priority every time.”
Since Fat Boy has been stuck long enough, the company went to the trouble of cutting off the lines’ electrical supply, thus leaving some 250 homes in the area without power for several hours while the linemen climbed up and brought the cat down. Without food and water for an extended period of time, Fat Boy was in a sensitive state, but a responding nonprofit organization, Paw Lives Matter, has assured that they’ll get the cat help, starting with electrolytes and snacks.
Photo Credit to http://www.nbcnews.com/