When Your Cat Is Stuck in a Tree
Rule One: Unless the cat is less than ten feet up the tree, or within safe reach with a ladder, do not attempt to go get the cat. [To fall from that height] can cause tremendous injury to a human.
Rule Two: Leave the cat alone. The cat went into the tree for safety, and it will not come down if it does not feel safe.
That’s good advice from Christopher D’Arpino of the South Shore Disaster Animal Rescue Team (SSDART), who is regularly called to rescue cats in trees.
Most cats, he says, will eventually come down themselves. And since they went up the tree to get away, they’re unlikely to come down when you call them, and will likely just go up higher when someone tries to climb up to them. Plus, if you fall from any higher than about 10 feet, you can do yourself serious injury.
Tree rescues generally require at least two qualified people and the proper equipment.
What to do, then?
First, place some cat food at the base of the tree, the smell may entice the cat to come down, but remove the food at night as to not draw unwanted animals to the area at the base of the tree. The most important thing is to leave the cat alone and chances are it will come down.
Fire departments and animal control officers are often neither obliged nor even permitted to rescue cats from trees. So check out other people who will – like local tree companies. But most such groups will only come out to rescue a cat in a tree if the cat has been in the tree for a long period of time, like three days. And they’ll ask questions first to determine if they think their services are really warranted.
Cats are very adept climbers, both up and down. If Fluffy decides to take an extended vacation in its new tree house, remember stay calm and know who to call and when.