Cat plucked from Lewiston canal

LEWISTON — The cat's name is Kloie and she spent a chunk of Tuesday night trapped in the canal.

Amber Waterman/Sun Journal

Jessica Gilliam of Lewiston was happy Wednesday evening to have her pregnant calico cat, Kloie, back safe and dry after the cat fell into a canal Tuesday evening. "I got her back here and cried," Gilliam said. "She's dry and acts like nothing happened. She wants to go back out, but I won't let her."

The cat, nearly two months pregnant, was plucked from the frigid water after more than a dozen people showed up to help with the rescue.

"It took two hours," said Jessica Gilliam, "and just about every agency was there to get her out."

Jessica lives with Kloie and two other cats in an apartment on Lincoln Street. Around sundown on Tuesday, a neighbor came rushing over to tell her that her money cat — the pregnant one — had fallen into the canal.

"I heard the splash and thought it was a beaver," said that neighbor, a man named Randy. "I looked down there and saw it was a cat. She kept trying to climb up out of there, but she'd just fall back into the water."

Escaping from that particular stretch of the canal — it runs between Lincoln and Oxford streets — is a near-impossible feat. The canal flows between two rock walls roughly 20 feet high. Just getting down there would have been dangerous.

Enter the professionals.

Animal Control Officer Wendell Strout went to the scene, as did Lewiston police Lt. Michael McGonagle. When they arrived, Kloie was still trying to get out of the water.

"When I got there, she was sitting on a rock," Strout said. "She tried to jump up on the wall but fell back into the water."

It was believed Kloie had been lounging beneath the fence next to the canal when she rolled over and tumbled into the water. The cat was obviously cold and uncomfortable as rescue attempts got under way.

"She was crying a lot," Jessica said. "But mostly because she was mad."

Strout and McGonagle realized they needed a ladder to descend into the canal if Kloie were to be saved. Enter the Lewiston Fire Department, with long ladders and equipment for any emergency.

Several firefighters assisted at the scene, setting up lights and bringing out the ladders and hip waders.

"We had the whole canal lit up," Strout said.

In the end, it was the animal control officer who got down into the water and plucked Kloie from between a pair of rocks. The cat was wet and cold but otherwise unharmed. She was returned to the warmth of Jessica's apartment.

"She was drenched and she was (angry)," Gilliam said. "The first thing she did when she got back here was eat."

Understandable. Due to deliver by the end of November, Kloie is eating for a litter these days.

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Kim Berry's picture

hmmm werent prepared when they got there uh?

gosh, I dont know the physical situation there, but, I hope that if I was ever called to pull a Pregnant cat out of a cold canal, I would have brought my ladder and rope WITH MEEE! hee heee

Cannot help it, have a big heart for kitties :) poor girl, how terrifying it must have been for her. I can empathise, and imagine her feeling. Then she had to wait longer, while they got rescue items.
oh boy

oh well, she is good now

Phyllis Hyde's picture

Rescued pregnant cat

I love cats myself, so I'm glad Kloie was rescued without injury to either herself or the rescuers.

However, after these kittens are delivered, Ms. Gilliam should make sure to have Kloie spayed, to ensure there are no more litters in Kloie's future. It is not responsible cat ownership to allow a cat to have kittens. There are already too many cats languishing at shelters all over the state who are in need of good permanent homes. It cannot be justified that the world needs more cats. So, Kloie needs to get spayed, and Ms. Gilliam should make sure that both of her other cats are also spayed or neutered.

Kim Berry's picture

NO, dissaggree on some of it

I would not let a pregnant cat OUT in the first place. Sometimes a cat becomes pregant before the owners get a chance to have them spade. All situations are different.

But just so people know, there are spay/neuter programs to help people with this.. All you have to do is ask your local shelter. True, that there are many cats at shelters who need homes NOW. hear breaking

Phyllis Hyde's picture

Pregnant cats

Female cats never go into heat until they are at least 7 months old. Their first heat will actually be between 7-9 months. If you have the kitten spayed before they are 6 months old (they can be spayed as young as 2 months old), you have a 4-month window during which you can get the kitten spayed before the kitten goes into heat and runs the risk of becoming pregnant. All situations are actually the same. To say that all situations are different is to excuse poor judgment on the part of the cat owner. If they know about cats, which they should before owning any, there can never be an excuse for an "OOPS!"

In this case, however, that is hindsight. The cat is currently pregnant. And within a couple of months of delivering the kittens, Kloie can go into heat again. And get pregnant again. Once Kloie has her kittens, there is not much time to get her spayed. Ms. Gilliam needs to know this, and she should be planning now for getting Kloie spayed as soon as possible after the birth of the kittens.

By getting Kloie spayed, Ms. Gilliam will actually be helping to save Kloie's life, and allow her to potentially live a long, healthy life. Cats that deliver multiple litters of kittens run the risk of developing cancer of the mammary glands in later life. Even one litter of kittens increases the risk. So do Kloie a favor and get her spayed.

 's picture

nice work

nice work


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