Last Updated on April 25, 2023 by Pets Feed
Cats get stuck in trees all the time, but there’s often no one to turn to for help, unless you live near Baton Rouge, Louisiana, USA. Here, Randall Kolb or « Cat Rescue Guy » 64, dedicated the last four years of his life to saving cats from trees. Kolb discovered his passion for rescuing cats just two days after retiring from his job at Louisiana State University when he found a cat stuck in a tree near his home. After the incident, Kolb decided to learn to climb trees so he could rescue the cats himself. The media spoke with Randall, who has already managed to save more than 150 animals.
Why did you decide to dedicate your life to rescuing cats?
I worked in an information technology office at Louisiana State University before retiring a few years ago. I have since discovered that there was a need for a cat rescuer in this field, so I set out to get the tree climbing training I needed to do just that. I practiced rock climbing for a year and then made myself available to save cats. Now I am 64 years old and I hope to continue doing so until I am 70 years old.
What inspired you?
Two days after my retirement, my wife found a cat stuck in a tree a block from our house. Nobody knew about the cat, and nobody took responsibility for it, so I did. That’s when I discovered how hard it was to find someone to take me seriously, let alone rescue a cat from a tree. There is a need for it and very few people are willing to do it.
Why are you doing it for free?
I do it for free Because I love cats, I hate pain, and I won’t let a cat and its master suffer. I love the feeling of being able to bring a beloved cat back into the arms of its owner safe and sound. Seeing them relieved and happy is the only reward I need. Money would simply divert attention from what is important.
Could you describe the process of rescuing a cat?
I use professional materials and methods to climb the tree. I climb the tree with ropes and the methods I use are very safe and do not harm the tree. To capture the cat, I prefer to use a carrier bag or cat bag, which is a homemade laundry bag with a glove sewn into the bottom. I put this glove on one hand, put the bag on my arm, grab the cat by the skin, then turn the bag over the feline.
How do you feel after the rescue operation?
For those uncooperative cats in difficult trees, where it takes a lot of time and effort to get to the cat and capture it, I find it very uplifting to finally have it in hand, especially in cases where I thought it wouldn’t would not be possible. But either way, it’s always a very satisfying and gratifying feeling to be able to bring a cat back into the arms of its owner. Both cat and owner are clearly relieved and happy, and I’m looking for that relaxed body language and smile on the owner’s face. It is very gratifying for me.
Is there a rescue you remember the most?
There are so many rescues I remember for different reasons, but perhaps the one I remember the most was of an unfamiliar cat that was found in a tree. I thought it would be an easy rescue at first, but the cat decided not to cooperate and was much more mobile than me in a tree with many extremely long branches. I couldn’t reach it and thought it would be the first cat I couldn’t save. But in the end I got it and when I scanned it for a microchip I was surprised to see it had one. I called the microchip company and found the owners thrilled to finally find their beloved cat who had been missing for 19 days. Bringing them together was particularly gratifying.
Why is it so important to rescue cats stuck in trees?
Before I talk about rescuing a cat from a tree, I think most people need to understand why it’s necessary. I found that most people don’t understand that cats get stuck in trees. Most people assume that if a cat can go up, it can go down. It sounds logical, but many people assume it’s true and never investigate the matter. The reality is that some cats know how to get off, and some don’t. To descend, the jack must descend rearward in the same orientation in which it is mounted. Descending backwards, however, is not instinctive in some cats.
Images: Facebook / Cat Rescue Guy
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