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HAMPSTEAD, NC (WWAY) — Not every day is a hard news day and some days you get stuck covering a cat up a tree.

Ruby the cat has been up a tree near her owner’s house for days. Her cries are loud and desperate which caught the attention of many neighbors concerned for a pet they say is a neighborhood staple. When Ruby’s owner, Linda Piver, couldn’t get any help from the local fire department, she decided to call WWAY.

“Hampstead Fire Department would not come help,” said Piver.

Piver says she knows most people don’t think a cat up a tree is news, but she needed action. She says Ruby is like a part of her family.

“They’re like your babies, especially when you’re single,” said Piver. “They’re like your children.”

So, we went searching for answers to get Piver’s baby out of the tree. Soon, Heywood Bryant with Barewood Services came to the rescue. Bryant, a self-proclaimed dog lover, quickly scaled the tree next to the one holding Ruby. After getting to the top, Ruby decided it was time to go and did the unthinkable. Jumped.

“He went down again another 10, 15 feet before he leaped from the little gum tree and he landed on his feet and took off towards the street,” said Bryant.

After the ditch effort, Ruby was nowhere to be found. A search party formed to find the cat but came up empty-handed. Bryant says he thinks the cat is fine and has probably learned a lesson.

“I’m real sure he’s not going to climb a tree again,” said Bryant.

Neighbors say we’re not in Mayberry anymore since the fire department wouldn’t respond to help the cat. Ruby is still on the run but Piver says she hopes she will be back soon.

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8 Comments on "HAPPENING MEOW: Family cat up a tree"

2015 years 9 months ago

Have you ever seen a cat skeleton in a tree?

Guest Reply
2015 years 9 months ago

I have…but the last hurricane we had launched it somewhere else I guess. It was our cat “Sitch Bubble” that climbed our maple right after this current city council was elected!!!!

2015 years 9 months ago

No, I haven’t but that’s because where I live, there is something called gravity.

Lori M.
2015 years 9 months ago

I’m glad the cat finally got out of the tree. I would definitely say this was a hard news story. I can’t see any reason the fire department would not help. They could have at least contacted some other authorities for her or gave her some idea who to call. Sure it is just an animal, but they matter, too. Maybe there are some things the owner can do to deter the cat from climbing trees. It is worth looking into.

2015 years 9 months ago

Ever see a cat skeleton at the base of a tree? Yea, didn’t think so.

2015 years 9 months ago

The OWNER should keep her cat indoors. Outdoor cats die younger due to cars, poisonings, attacks by wildlife, etc. Having said that, I hope she gets her baby back. I own 2 INDOOR cats and can’t imagine the pain of having one lost.

2015 years 9 months ago

Just because a cat is an indoor cat doesn’t mean they’ll never get out. It happens and it can encounter a dog or another cat who chases it or worse.

Nowadays, you have to call a tree-service to help get the cat down. They may eventually come down, but their claws can’t grip well when coming down like they can going up.

Cat lover
2015 years 9 months ago

Come on folks, let’s get real here. Cat can climb up a tree. Cat can climb down a tree. I applaude the fire department for not getting involved with this stupidity.

I have owned many cats and many dogs. I can tell you that cats are the ultimate con artists. The cat could come down, but loved the attention.

If you had just put her most hated dog nearby and left them alone, I assure you she would have been down in a few hours.


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