They weren’t up a tree, but two tiny black kittens were rescued from a sewer by a couple of volunteer firefighters in Balgonie.
Jesse Edwards was buying water at a local store after dropping his kids off Monday morning when the wife of one of his fellow volunteer firefighters came running in asking for kitten food. He asked why and she told him there were kittens trapped in a sewer nearby.
When he arrived, he said a few people from the town were there, including his deputy fire chief.
“They already had one kitten out at the time and there was still one kitten stuck in the sewer pipe between the two sides of the street,” Edwards said.
He asked his fellow firefighter to go get a plumbing snake and then he jumped into the manhole to get the kitten out. Edwards said it was a tight squeeze for him and the water in the storm drain was knee deep and smelled bad.
“They brought the snake and we tried running a piece of cardboard on the end of it to kind of push him my way, but that didn’t work,” Edwards explained. “So I took off my shirt and told them to tape it to the end of the snake so he wouldn’t be able to get by, and in the second pass of the snake we gently pushed him out my end. I grabbed him there and put him in the box.”
After a quick search of the area, the group found two more black kittens behind a shed in a nearby yard. They also remembered there were reports of an older cat being hit by a car in the area a few days ago.
Edwards guessed the kittens were about three to four weeks old and had probably squeezed through the grates in the storm drain a few days ago.
All four kittens were checked over by a veterinarian and handed over to the care of Regina Cat Rescue.
“As far as I know all the cats were healthy when we took them out,” Edwards said. “The ones in the sewer seemed a bit more malnourished than the other ones, they were pretty skinny and didn’t have much fight in them. But as soon as we put them in the box with some food, they just instantly started eating. They were very hungry and scared and wet.”
One of the kittens had already been adopted by the end of the day.
“A local lady in town, one of her cats just passed away here not too long ago, so she wanted to take one of them home to give her other cats some company,” Edwards said.
He added this isn’t actually the first time Balgonie firefighters have come to the rescue of stranded animals, noting they have responded to a call about a cat up a tree before and even got a call about an iguana up a tree one day.
— With files from Jessie Anton