Orange County

Well, Meow What? Firefighters Try Everything to Rescue a Kitten in a Storm Drain

Cat food and cat sounds didn't work, but Orange County firefighters didn't give up on a tiny gray kitten

Determined firefighters went beyond the call of duty and below an Orange County street to rescue a frightened and highly uncooperative kitten.

The team of firefighters tried everything they could think of to rescue the tiny kitten trapped in an Orange County storm drain. The 2-month-old kitten was on its way to her new home when she escaped from the open sunroof of her owner's car during a stop at a Placentia gas station.

The owner, who adopted the kitten for his girlfriend, saw the gray kitty run into the street and fall into the storm drain.

Fortunately, she's an extremely vocal young cat.

Listening closely for the imperiled kitten's distressed meows, firefighters  removed two manhole covers near Rose Drive and Imperial Highway. They tried luring the kitten by playing cat sounds on a phone and clanking metal to herd her closer to rescuers.

At one point, a firefigher was lowered head-first into a hole as his colleagues held onto his legs. Even a can of wet cat food didn't help. 

Finally, firefighters dropped an air tank into the drain. Its hissing sound appeared to do the trick, prompting the kitten to run within reach of a firefighter who pulled her to safety and carefully handed her over to the owner.

"I'm extremely thankful for what they did, taking there time away, dedicating a truck," the owner said. "It means a lot. It really does."

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