A few people from Cranbrook are being hailed as heroes after they helped save a kitten from certain death on Tuesday (July 12).
It all started when a little girl fell in love with a kitten and wanted to bring him home.
Tara Horvath is a roofer and works on a rural property near Cranbrook.
On Monday, she brought her daughter, Hunter, to work so she could play with the other kids on the farm for the day.
“She was playing with the other children on the farm and the family recently had kittens. She fell in love with this kitten, so all day Hunter was after me, mom, can I have a kitten? Mom, can I have a kitten? said Horvath.
“I told him we would think about it. Later that evening she cleaned her room and we drew up a written contract because, you know, cats are a big responsibility. She had already chosen the kitten; he’s so small he’s only about six weeks old, and the kids had already named him Rocky.
Horvath says when Tuesday morning rolled around and they got there, Rocky was nowhere to be found. That is, until they hear a faint meow coming from under an old outbuilding – where a small pipe leads to a disused septic tank with only about a meter and a half or two feet of space between the ground and building.
“We tried to put a rope there, we had a lasso, we tried a sewer snake, with no success at all. We tried all day.
Exasperated, Horvath knew she needed help. So she called Roto-Rooter.
Dan Meldrum and his wife Ashlie, owners of the Roto-Rooter franchise in Cranbrook, had never received such a call before.
“We were doing work on Tuesday when we got a phone call from our receptionist with a weird question,” Meldrum explained. “She said a kitten had fallen into a sewer line, and the lady who called saw that there were animal rescues advertised on the Roto-Rooter website. Personally, we don’t do not really advertise animal rescues per se, but I do know that Roto-Rooter does them, mostly in the US.
“I said, well, we can definitely try.”
And they tried.
Meldrum deployed specialized camera equipment to search for the kitten.
“Let’s see if she’s really in that pipe,” Meldrum said. “You could hear it, but with the camera all I could see were cobwebs in the pipe. If there was an animal in there, they would surely have knocked down some of the webs. of spiders.
That’s when they decided to take an addictive peek with the camera.
“We could all hear him meowing, so Dan pushed the camera and eventually found an old well, about four or five feet deep and eight inches in diameter,” Horvath said.
Lo and behold, at the bottom of the well, they could see Rocky’s eyes shining with the camera.
“Without their camera, we would never have found her,” Horvath said. “We literally tried all day with that other pipe, from nine in the morning until six at night, and we weren’t even in the right place.”
After locating the kitten, the team used a makeshift rope to try to catch her.
“She kept climbing the rope, but she would go a foot or two away from the top and fall back. She was so tired,” Horvath said.
The team ended up temporarily removing some floorboards to gain better access to the opening of the old shaft.
“Hunter was the only one who could fit there, so she went down with the rope, but again she was unlucky,” Horvath said. “So we ended up using the Shop-Vac.”
“We used it on the lowest setting, and we didn’t want to hurt her, so we were really trying to get her back and not her face. Hunter grabbed the kitten’s leg and back with the vacuum, so it didn’t hurt her, and she came right over,” Meldrum said.
He says it was great teamwork, and Horvath agrees.
“It was really cool to be a part of it, so many people were involved and we all came together for this common goal,” Meldrum said. “We love this community and always want to help in any way we can, whether it’s helping people or furry people.”
Horvath says Rocky is home and happy, being taken care of by Hunter. They even nicknamed her Rocky Rooter.
“The kids on the farm said we could change her name, but we thought it was perfectly appropriate. She had a rough start, but now she has a great life,” Horvath said. an incredible display of teamwork and perseverance. We were all a little emotional when we finally got it, everyone cheering and clapping. It was so rewarding.