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Cat plays starring role in her own revival ... a real Rumpleteazer!

03 January 2017
Cat plays starring role in her own revival ... a real Rumpleteazer!

A cat reported as ‘having been dead for over two hours’ decided to open her eyes after being lifted out of thick bushes near the Holy Trinity church in Sutton on Monday (2 January).

The fluffy ball of Siberian Forest fur began to stir as Cats Protection volunteer Jenny Reynolds struggled – with a broken arm – to scan the lifeless feline so, if chipped, she could report the sad news to the owner. But as soon as Jenny recognised signs of life, she and her fellow-rescuer/driver Steve Wright, carefully popped puss in a carrier, and rushed to Northside Emergency vets.

Long ‘tale’ short, seemed she’d ‘probably been spooked by fireworks, run away from home, and gone into a protective trance’. And once her name and details were revealed by the chip check – all became crystal clear! With a name like Rumpleteazer, one of the crafty cat characters in Cats the Musical, unsurprising that she was a bit of an actress!

Back home in Victoria Road, Sutton, the Trappett family – especially daughters Ashleigh and Stacey – were worried about their cat, who’d disappeared from the garden around 2pm on  New Years Day. They’d searched all day and called throughout the night. With over 24 hours elapsed they were just about to give up hope when they got the call from the vet that she was found safe and well.

Ashleigh, who is 17 and an A-level student at Bishop Walsh, couldn’t believe her ears. “We did name her after the cat in Cats. In the story, Rumpleteazer and her co-star-cat Mungojerrie get into lots of trouble, and they live in Victoria Grove causing their family lots of grief – so our girl is living up to her reputation! We were so very happy to have her back home. Jenny and Steve delivered her to us, and we couldn’t be more relieved. But Rumpleteazer wasn’t in the least repentant – just hungry - and went off for a sleep on my bed wondering what all the fuss was about. She is 7, I’m 17, and we’re back together in 2017 – so number 7 is definitely my lucky number!”

Steve Wright, who is a decorator and lives in Erdington, initially raised the alarm as he was staying in Sutton looking after a friend's house. "I saw the cat shoot from behind some bins, and thought it may have been hit by a car and gone into the bushes to die. I got someone else to look too, and they agreed it was lifeless. We stared and stared and no movement, I wanted advice what to do, so went to see Jenny of Cats Protection. We were both so very very surprised when those eyes opened!" 

Equally joyous Jenny says she was ‘only too happy to help and had never seen a cat act dead so well’!

“So glad to bring the best news to such a delightful family. Our thanks for their donation, as all the work we do is funded by the public. We wish that, like dogs, all cats had to be chipped. Microchipping helps cats get reunited with their owners and, in sad circumstances like this might have been, gives closure when a cat is killed in an RTA.”

Volunteer Sheila Pennell, who deals with microchip queries for the branch, echoes Jenny’s wise words. “By coincidence my scanner was on call the same day too. Another Sutton cat-finder had found a wandering black and white boy near where she stables her horse. And because the cat was believed chipped and advertised as ‘found’ on Animal Search, paws crossed he too may be reunited with his owner.

“We all love happy endings in Cats Protection, and we’ve asked Ashleigh if we can go into her school and give a presentation about the work of the branch and cat care – and that definitely includes the importance of chipping.”

** To request a school or group talk, or to volunteer as a fosterer with Cats Protection, call the helpline – 0345 260 1503. From the Rumpleteazer story, you can be sure two days will never be the same!