Critters are quite good at getting into trouble. They eat things they shouldn’t, chew on valuable items, and seek out hiding holes that are too small for them.
It’s difficult to tell if they’re doing these things on purpose, or if they are just curious or clumsy — either way, they end up needing our help in many situations.
This story takes place in England, but anyone who has had a cat can probably imagine a similar incident with their own pet.
Apparently, this British cat found a dryer vent hole and decided to see if it could fit inside. The problem was, the hole was only 6 inches wide, and there was a hidden grate at the other end.
The cat was stuck inside with no room to turn, move or be pulled out. The only part of the cat sticking out was the tail, and, well, that wasn’t much use.
When the owner saw what their cat had done, they called for help. According to sources, the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals sent out Glenn Baird, an experienced animal collection officer.
“The curious cat had crawled inside the vent and pipework for the tumble dryer and got jammed in tight,” Baird said. “I couldn’t get anything around her in order to pull her free and it was such a small space — only about 6 inches wide — that I couldn’t get my hand in either.”
“All you could see was her tail poking out of the end, and her face through the grate on the outside.”
But he had a trick up his sleeve that he thought could work. There was no room around the cat, so he used a popsicle stick (lolly stick) and some butter to try to free the cat.
“I put butter inside the pipe using a lolly stick, removed the vent cover with my hammer, and pushed her,” he reported. “Luckily, she slid right out.”
Will the cat try again? Maybe not after this incident.
Butter has helped more than one trapped animal lately. Oak and Furrows Wildlife Rescue Centre of Wiltshire was brought a bedraggled bat who’d found his way onto a particularly stick fly trap.
His tiny wings were stuck to the glue, and he was tired and had torn some of his fur off in his struggles to break free. “He’d flown straight into it — face first — with his wings outstretched,” one of the workers, Jess Ostler, said according to sources.
“He hadn’t been there for more than 24 hours but his wings were stuck and all around his face was sore and missing fur where he’d managed to yank it off the fly paper a bit,” she continued. “They’re so delicate and he was stuck on so hard we weren’t sure we could get him off successfully.”
Just as in the cat’s case, the rescue was aided by butter!
“But we rubbed loads of spreadable olive butter around where he was stuck and managed to prise him off and he had a tiny bubble bath to remove the butter,” Ostler said.
Thanks to the power of butter, a cat and a bat are now free to live their lives and get into new and surprising troubles.