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Scary Foster Moment....

post #1 of 3
Thread Starter 
Wolfie is sound asleep on the end of the bed after an hour or two playing with the Fuzzy-Butt Triplets, and seems to be having good dreams. I get to dream again too, after the Nightmare on Tree Street. Wolfie is a kitten I got from Peg Brickley and is one of only two kittens she's brought me from 9th and Wilder that has survived. He's an 11-week-old orange and white domestic longhair just neutered at the last PSPCA clinic--he already has an eager adopter and only needs his rabies shot.

When I went to bed Wednesday night, I noticed that I hadn't seen Wolfie after I'd come home; Carol said she'd last seen him going downstairs in the afternoon. The kitchen door was open, but Wolfie had become accustomed to being on the back deck so we didn't worry too much about it--we figured he'd gone into the alley and would be back in in the morning waiting to be fed with the rest of The Herd.

He wasn't, and then we really started to worry. Throughout Thursday I ran a series of patrols through the alley but found no sign of him. I made a mental note of all of the yards he could get into--he's not yet able to jump fences or walls--and figured he might have been found in one of those yards and taken in. I also discovered a potential new PCCC member (Philadelphia Community Cats Council), and she agreed with the hypothesis. So early this morning I printed up flyers with Wolfie's photo (I really need to work on the focus) and posted them on the 400 blocks of Tree and Jackson Streets. I knew he could not have gone any farther than than on his own.

When I came home today I found that the Brats from Hell (May Their Mom's Food Stamps Be Cut Off) had torn down the posters on Tree Street, and still no sign of Wolfie. I did another alley patrol and gave the mosquitoes another pint of blood--nothing.

I was going to try again tomorrow morning, but in the meantime there were other chores to be done. Carol had asked me to cut down a really big weed in the back, and I was about to do that when I heard a meow. I froze and listened. There it was again. I then meowed myself and was rewarded with a steady stream of meows from what appeared to be one of the backyards, but I could see nothing when I looked into them. The meows continued, and then I realized I was looking in the wrong direction.

The meows were above me. There is a tree growing out of the alley, and its branches touch the roof of a nearby house. I climbed up the tree partially and saw Wolfie--he'd gotten himself stuck in a goddamn tree!! The only tree worth mentioning on my block of so-called "Tree Street". Yep, the "Kitten in a Tree" stereotype--and these days forget the Fire Department. He was too high up for me to safely reach him and too scared to climb down, even with the "help" of the other cats (That was something to watch--Wolfie is well-liked by the other cats, and they tried to guide him back down the tree but he was too scared). He'd been up there the whole time.

I actually broke into the yard and tried to scale the wall and the roof but couldn't. Meanwhile Wolfie kept running back and forth between the tree branches and the roof, meowing the whole time. Night was falling and rain was approaching. And that's when I got lucky.

While looking for a ladder I found a friendly neighbor with an improvised ladder and a less well-developed fear of falling. He made it onto the roof and, after about a half hour, got Wolfie, popped him into a bag and brought him down. With the help of some "lard soup"--a recipe a fellow volunteer cooked up that no kitten can resist.

Wolfie's downstairs privileges have been revoked, and thanks to him the other kittens are also stuck upstairs. He'll get his rabies shot and go to his new home--I'll relax then. Until then, if I look 10 years older you'll know why....

PS--The yard I broke into was the same yard from which I'd heard meows in 2005 and from which I'd rescued my very first kitten. Some things never change, I guess....
post #2 of 3
OMG, that is a "few new gray hairs" moment, isn't it? Thank goodness you heard him, and YAY for helpful neighbors with no fear of falling!

post #3 of 3
Oh what a scary moment! I had a foster that ripped open our screen on the second floor and escaped once. I was horrified, but luckily she came back right away. I was worried that she got out and got herself knocked up, since she was a nursing 6 week old kittens, but she had her spay day 2 weeks later with no problem.

Anyway, I'm glad everything turned out alright and Wolfie is safe, sound and dreaming of his impending new fur-ever home!

Bless your heart for opening your heart to these babes - even if they do give us premature gray hair!
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