The hole on the drain cap was not even an inch wide.
But a curious kitten managed to wedge its paw in the middle of the steel cap.
With nothing left to do, the 4-month-old kitten howled in pain, prompting a 911 call by a concerned passer-by.
So firefighters from the Lauderdale Lakes station headed to the 4500 block of Northwest 39th Street where they found the kitten in a precarious situation.
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“It’s a living, breathing thing,” said Broward Sheriff Fire Rescue spokesman Mike Jachles. “That’s what we do. We respond to all types of emergencies.”
“It was in there really tight,” he said.
After working for about 30 minutes to free the kitten, firefighters went to “plan B,” Jachles said: Take the kitten and the 15-pound steel cap to the station.
They tried some more, to no avail, all the while making calls to local animal hospitals for help.
VCA Imperial Point Animal Hospital agreed to help, so firefighter Chris Hottz and Battalion Jon O’Brien whisked the kitty to the vet.
There, Dr. Lara Wiseman sedated the kitten and the firefighters cut a wedge in the cap using two saws and freed the kitten.
Wiseman examined the kitten, which did not have any broken bones, just a sore paw.
“Luckily, we had a good outcome,” Jachles said.
The kitten’s new name: Captain.