A soggy moggy has survived a potential cat-astrophe after fire crews rescued the day-old kitten “inadvertently” flushed down the toilet at a home in Sydney’s northwest.
The kitty made it through the S-bend but got stuck in a pipe underground.
After a more than four hour rescue operation, the kitten was being nursed again by an anxious mum as its relieved family marvelled at the versatility of the NSW Fire Brigades.
A firefighter known as Cain, who had only been in the job four months, on Tuesday lifted the kitten from the pipe beneath the ground.
And as a thank-you, the family have decided to call it Cain.
“Cain actually worked as a plumber before he joined the fire brigade so he was certainly a handy member to have on the crew,” Fire Brigade Superintendent Ian Krimmer said.
The rescue involved three fire crews, including a specialist search and rescue unit, which were sent to the home at Jacquie Circuit in Baulkham Hills after receiving an emergency call at 11.30am.
“It was a long effort for fire crews and they were very concerned as to whether or not the kitten would survive, and all the firefighters are very very relieved,” Supt Krimmer said.
A camera was put through the pipes to locate the kitten, then crews dismantled the toilet and worked their way through a concrete slab with jackhammers toward their target.
Supt Krimmer told AAP it was unclear exactly how the kitten had been flushed down the loo – there were unconfirmed reports a toddler was involved – saying only that he was told it was “an accident that had occurred”.
“We always try and help with domestic pets where we can,” Supt Krimmer said.
The kitten is the second pet in a week that fire officers have been called to rescue.
Officers on Sunday saved a 10-year-old old German Shepherd dog which had been trapped for two days in a storm water drain at Bayview, in Sydney’s northern Beaches.
It took two hours to cut and dig down to the pipe to free the dog.
The Fire Brigade view such incidents as excellent training opportunities to help firefighters develop their skills, as long as they doesn’t interfere with its primary responsibilities.
“It was certainly a rewarding day for fire crews,” Supt Krimmer said.