UNITED KINGDOM – Frightened cat ‘Dipper’ almost lived up to his name literally after finding himself stranded on a tree trunk in a fast-flowing river.
The petrified kitty was in clear danger of being swept away when the alarm was raised by a passer-by, sparking an elaborate rescue operation in the city centre.
His plight was spotted by Les Braiden, who is 57, who said: “I was on my way to get my newspaper last Saturday morning when I spotted the cat in the Stour near the butterfly garden off Mill Lane.
“I have no idea how he got there, but he looked in a very precarious situation and was shivering and clearly frightened.
“One false step and he would have been swept down the river.”
And so, Les, who works for BT and lives in St Stephen’s called the RSPCA.
Duty inspector Deborah Pert arrived quickly on the scene.
She stated: “Cats often get themselves into sticky situations but I hadn’t seen anything quite like this before.
“Because he was below quite a high wall, there was no way I could reach down and simply grab him. I decided the safest way was to lower a special net I have in the van and see if we could coax him into it.”
With a little help from Les, Deborah leaned over the wall and managed to lower the net right alongside Dipper.
She explained: “It was just a case of coaxing him to put his front feet in and then I would be able to scoop him up, which fortunately he did.”
Deborah found Dipper was indeed micro-chipped and was able to quickly trace his owners, Nayelli and Richard Navarro-Pollott, who live in nearby Pound Lane and have two young cats.
Mum-of-two Nayelli, who is 42, who is a teacher, stated: “I had no idea Dipper was in trouble.
“He is only 18 months old and very inquisitive.
“Heaven knows how he ended up a stranded on a tree branch. I can only assume he was chasing something, but it was a relief to know he was safe and we thank the RSPCA for rescuing him.”
Another happy ending!