Neighbourly Kindness

If you follow me on twitter (@mssburns) or Facebook, you’ll know that yesterday we had a bit of drama.


The day started well… the sun was out so I headed off for a massage to help relax me and ease some aches and pains and I planned to head home, see my brother who was popping round to help move some radiators outside to jet wash them. The plan was then a lazyish afternoon, followed by a hot bath before heading off to my Mother-in-Law’s birthday party.


Oh how things changed.


Finlay, our youngest cat – perpetually referred to as ‘the kitten’ due to the fact he looks tiny compared to Jasper (the ‘cat’) and his propensity to find himself in all sorts of trouble and mischief decided that, instead, we would have quite a different afternoon.


Finlay had decided he wanted to be outside, enjoying the sun. So off he trotted. Some hours later we heard a rather pitiful meow, to which my brother said ‘hmmm…. he sounds high up’. We checked the roof of the single storey extension – his usual resting place, but no sign. A short while later we realised he had got himself stuck up a tree. Not just any tree, a great big conifer. We could hear him, but couldn’t spot him. He could clearly see us as the closer we got to the tree, the louder and more pitiful the meowing became!


We thought he might work his way down, but his meowing and wailing continued – so much so that three different sets of neighbours came across to find out whose cat it was (sadly ours!) and to see if they could help.


A call to the RSPCA and we were told we had to wait at least 24 hours before they’d even refer to the inspector. I contacted the non-emergency fire number for advice, and was told they only attend on referral from the RSPCA… so we were, like Finlay, a little stuck,


A bit of the tree that Fin climbed up – it’s the REALLY big one, with the ladders propped against it at the bottom. He wasa good 40 foot up….

The wailing continued and it soon became time to head out to the party. Reluctantly I agreed to go, but first pushed a note through our neighbour’s door to advise that the pitiful ball of noise coming from the tree in his garden belonged to us, and to let him know we’d done what we could etc.


Anyhow, some hours later after checking my phone I saw a message from my wonderful neighbour. It seems he had returned home and mounted a rescue himself. I dread to think how he did it – his words to me on the phone were ‘when I realised I could step onto the roof I thought I’d gone a bit high…’ – but he managed to rescue Finlay. Apparently he was sat in a birds nest when my neighbour got up there.


As soon as he was brought down he hot footed it over the fence, into our garden to await our return. Apparently Finlay tried to cling onto every branch on the way down, and my neighbour was thanked with a scratch or too…


I am genuinely touched and amazed that my neighbour took it upon himself to get up a rather large tree. It helps, I am sure, that he is a real animal lover, and he did say he couldn’t leave Finlay up the tree, especially as he sounded so distressed. I am certain that there was no way Fin was going to work out how to get down by himself, so in all probability he would be still stuck up there now.


We returned home about 10pm to find a note pushed through the door from another ‘concerned cat lover neighbour’ who had contacted the RSPCA (and had been given the same advice as us) and a very hungry kitten at the back door – he ran straight to his dish for some food and then settled on the bed for a good night’s sleep.

A hungry Finlay fills up

Surprisingly, he’s not shown any interest in playing out today. I on the other hand am keeping a watch out for my wonderful neighbour to return from his farm to say thank you with a bottle of wine and a box of chocolates.


Filed under Cats

3 responses to “Neighbourly Kindness

  1. What a jolly nice neighbour.

    To be honest, it sounds like you live on a massive farm.

    Do you live on a massive farm?

    • Ha ha, no a Victorian semi. The neighbour has a large garden with stables in.

      He has a farm a short drive away and I think probably takes in various stray animals etc.

      I wish I lived on a big farm!!

  2. What a lovely story. Bella is about two months from being let outside, although gets carried about now she’s had her injections. I’m dreading when she does go, absolutely dreading. Think I’ll be coming to you for advise on integrating the great outside with your cat 🙂

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