Idaho Power rescues kitty stuck on power pole for three days

NAMPA, Idaho (KBOI) - Kayla DeGraw doesn't like cats.

The Nampa resident probably wouldn't think too much of a cat stuck up on power pole in her neighborhood. But when DeGraw found out that her father's cat had been stuck on a power pole for three days, she started to worry.

The cat, as she describes, is not just another cat.

"I don't like cats, but my dad doesn't take anxiety medicine because of that cat," DeGraw said. "He's on oxygen and doesn't get out of the house much."

Fritz the cat was all the talk for residents in the 1st Street North neighborhood Monday morning. Fritz is a companion cat and Degraw's father has a note from a doctor with the distinction.

No one's terribly sure why Fritz decided to climb to the top of a large power pole, but she did and neighbors say she's been stuck ever since. (Photos from the Scene >>>)

The kitty, cold and wet from a morning rain, could be heard crying from its perch.

Neighbors started calling who ever they could - Idaho Power, animal control, fire fighters and even the mayor's office.

"This isn't a major thing to a lot of people, but it is to some folks," said Ellen Davenport of Caldwell.

Davenport heard about the kitty on Facebook and came down to help.

"We've been calling all weekend, but they kept on telling us that it's just a cat, it's just a cat," said Sabina, who manages the small trailer park. "It's not like I wanted a news camera down here but I wanted someone to help us get it down."

By 10:30 a.m., their calls for help were heard.

Idaho Power says its policy is to usually let cats figure out how to get down on their own. Usually, officials say, a cat will work its way down because it's hungry or thirsty.

"Today (was) an unusual situation because I was told the cat has been up there for three days - so it (didn't) look as though it's going to make its way down on its own this time," said Kevin Winslow, Idaho Power spokesman.

Idaho Power sent a crew to the scene. After about two hours of failed attempts and some logistic changes (calling in a truck with a longer reach bucket), they managed to pull Fritz to safety.

"We've been doing this for almost 100 years so I think we've got a pretty good handle on when we need to intervene," Winslow said. "This did seem to be an extreme situation and we're happy to help our customers and rescue a family pet."

Fritz had no comment.

"It's more than just a cat, it's my best friend," Orville Thrall, Fritz's owner told KBOI-TV after the reunion.