By Cara Sulieman
A mischievous moggie was left stuck 60 feet up a tree for nine days until rescuers were finally able to reach it.
Two-year-old Sammy went missing from his home in Fife almost two weeks ago before finally being spotted by his owner clinging onto a high branch in a small wood near their house in Limekilns.
Suzi Morrice, 32, tried to coax her wayward cat down with tuna and cat food for a few days before calling the fire brigade in desperation asking for their expert advice.
But even they were unable to help and in turn she approached animal welfare chiefs at the Scottish SPCA who were also left flummoxed.
In the end only the skill of a tree surgeon was able to help save the day and reunite Sammy with his worried owners.
Suzi said: “Sammy went missing two weeks ago and I found him stuck up the tree when I went for a walk four days later. We tried everything – I even put tuna on a 20 foot pole and waved it in front of him to try and persuade him to come down.”
“I called the fire brigade but they said, understandably, that they would only come out as a last resort and that I should call the Scottish SPCA.
“They couldn’t have been more helpful, and came round to see us every night to see what was happening and give advice.”
Sammy was finally rescued on Sunday with a little bit of help from the local tree surgeons, the Plummer Brothers from Inverkeithing.
Suzi said: “They had been out earlier in the week, but the ground beneath the tree was just too unstable to put a ladder up so high.
“I was away in town with my Mum when they eventually got Sammy down.
“He had moved down a little lower by Sunday and Martin, the tree surgeons, longest ladder could just reach the branch he was on.
“My husband Steve is 6ft 1ns and went up the ladder and Sammy jumped onto his shoulder.
“As soon as they reached the ground Sammy bolted, but when my husband and Dad got home 10 minutes later he was there with his face buried in the food bowl.”
Despite his ordeal, the feline appears to be unscathed but has lost a lot of weight and was being taken to the vet last night to get checked out.
Suzi said: “It has been brilliant having him home – he’s been lovely since he got back, really cuddly and friendly.
“It’s just such a relief, and we really want to thank everyone who helped rescue him, especially the Scottish SPCA and Martin the tree surgeon.
“I don’t know what I would have done if he had been hurt.”
Scottish SPCA Senior Inspector John Chisholm said: “Cats are very independent creatures and while we were all worried about Sammy he didn’t seem overly distressed.
“We took advice from the fire brigade and a tree surgeon but the climb was too steep and dangerous to attempt a 60ft rescue.
“Finally he started to come down a fair distance and when we placed a ladder against the tree one of his owners Steven climbed up and Sammy simply jumped down onto his shoulder.
“After a 10 day wait it was quite an easy rescue in the end. We’re delighted Sammy is now safe with all four paws on the ground.”
Local councilor Gerry McMullan was in the village at the time of the rescue, and praised the actions of the community.
He said: “I was in Limekilns for a community beach clean-up and we were walking along the shore when we came upon the lady looking up at her cat.
“Fortunately, a local tree surgeon was able to come along and put a ladder up that reached the cat.
“I want to praise the local community for their help and support in the rescue – it is my understanding that the owners have only lived in Limekilns for a short while but the community really rallied round.”