Florida firefighters come to the rescue for tiny kittens in desperate need of help.
Recently, Firefighter Elaine Owns from Hillsborough County Fire Rescue jumped into action to save a tiny kitten in danger.
One Saturday morning, a man drove to the local Brandon, Florida supermarket. Upon arrival, he got out of his pickup truck and heard the tiny cries from a kitten. To his disbelief, the kitten had been hiding between the pickup’s gas tank and exterior floor. Amazingly, the kitten was unharmed after the trip to the grocery store.
After flagging down the crew of Engine 18, firefighter Elaine Owens responded.
As you can see in the pictures shared with Facebook, she got down into the wheel well. Then, she managed to secure the 2-month-old kitten, posing in a picture and smiling.
Soon after the rescue, a bystander at the scene asked to adopt the kitten.
Hillsborough County Fire Rescue wrote on Facebook.
“This morning, the crew of Engine 18 came to the rescue of an approximately 2-month-old kitten trapped under a pickup truck. The truck owner flagged down our crew from a supermarket parking lot, where he had been about to get out when he heard the kitten crying. The kitten had been lodged between the vehicle floor exterior and the gas tank for the entire trip.
FIrefighter Elaine Owens crawled under the truck and was able to extricate the kitten with no injuries. Even more good news: A bystander offered to take the kitten home and clean it up as the newest member of her family.”
In the comments, Owen’s proud mom responded, saying, “I am a proud mom of a firefighter that also says she is coming home with a new kitten. We are still negotiating the second part.”
As it turned out, the family already had a cat, but it seems the firefighter really enjoyed rescuing the kitten.
Firefighters Save Kitten in Storm Drain
A month earlier, the firefighters from Engine 39 responded to a call at 9 am. This time, another 2-month-old kitten was stuck in an underground storm drain. According to the call, the kitten had been there for two days. To get to the kitten, the firefighters would work together with Animal Control.
“When the crew from Engine 39 arrived on scene they saw the kitten and immediately started rescue efforts. The crew led by Acting Captain Jayson Lynn had to do some out-of-the-box thinking to rescue the kitten. Getting help from animal control, and the caller they came up with a plan,” stated the Facebook post.
Then, the team got creative to help the kitten.
“It was truly a team effort. First, the crew made a makeshift bridge for the kitty out of two pieces of household baseboard and a towel. They placed food at the top in hopes that the hungry kitty would climb out. Unfortunately, it didn’t work.
Although the makeshift bridge didn’t work, the firefighters found a simpler solution that did the trick.
“On to Plan B. Crews then took a low-pressure hose and sprayed lightly in the drain to get the kitty to move towards a net. Success! Crews then used a fishing net to scoop the kitty out of the drain and turn it over to the owner.
“A big thanks to Acting Captain Jayson Lynn, Acting Driver Engineer Tony Barrios, Firefighter Eric Tompkins, Animal Control, and everyone else that helped out on scene. Great job, guys!”
Checking Vehicles for Kittens
Stories like these are heartwarming and a good reminder to check cars left outdoors for possible hitchhiking kittens, particularly as the weather gets colder.
Giving animals a warning can prevent them from taking an unexpected trip down the street and avoiding serious injury or worse. For example, tapping on the car hood a couple of times and stomping the floorboards might be a good idea before starting the car, just in case. Or, honk the horn, peek under the car and check around the wheels. Then, listen for any sounds like meowing.
If you find a kitten, put on gloves to protect your hands, and wrap the cat in a towel, “burrito-style,” suggests The Oregonian. Then, take the kitten to a veterinarian.
If the kitten has managed to get oil on its fur, it’s best to try and clean the cat so it doesn’t try to ingest the oil.
“Dilute the motor oil with an edible oil, such as butter, Crisco, or cooking oil – never use tea tree oil or eucalyptus oils, gasoline, or paint thinners. Rub it on your fingers and work it into the cat’s fur.Then bathe her with a mild dish soap (not dishwasher detergent, which is toxic to cats) such as Dawn, which Houchen recommends for its degreasing qualities.
If you need help removing the cat from your car in the first place, call your county animal control, the police non-emergency number or 911.”
By taking a moment to check, you could help save a kitten’s life like these heroic firefighters.