Curiosity trapped the cat

AN Evanston neighbourhood rallied together last week to help a pet cat, whose curiosity saw it get stuck down a local drainway for over 24 hours.

It took the efforts of several concerned neighbours, Gawler Council staff and even Gawler Metropolitan Fire Service (MFS) firefighters to rescue the black male tabby, who was discovered stuck inside a Para Road underground drain by local residents last Wednesday morning.

After at least three separate Evanston residents heard the tabby meowing inside the drain and contacted council to help retrieve it, staff visited the street later that afternoon, but were unable to enter into the drain.

One of the residents, Juliet Stevens, said the cat would’ve been down there since before it was discovered, a cause for concern for neighbours once they realised it was a pet.

“I feel it’s well-loved because it’s got a red collar with diamantés,” she said on the day.

“If you’re buying a collar with diamantés on it, you care for the cat.

“We can’t leave it, it’s been down there for two days.”

Para Road resident Samantha Ratcliffe saw the cat again on Thursday morning, and her family called the MFS for help.

However, the local firefighters also failed to breach the drain’s defences, leading the council to send its infrastructure maintenance staff to open up a grate into the drain at 2pm on Thursday.

It took an hour for staff to pry open the grate, but by then the cat was nowhere
to be seen, or heard – possibly having been scared off by the commotion.

Ms Ratcliffe’s younger sister, Kylee Potts, found the tabby alive and well in the opened-up section of the drain at around 4.30pm, picking him up and putting an end to his drain adventure.

“I’m so glad my sister was able to get it out safely,” Ms Ratcliffe said.

Ms Ratcliffe is still in possession of the cat – which is desexed, but has no identification on his collar – and is asking for the owner to come forward, otherwise she’ll have to take it to a shelter.

Anyone who thinks they may be the owner, or knows who it might be, is urged to contact The Bunyip office on 8522 1233.



Matteo Gagliardi joined The Bunyip in August 2016 with almost two years experience in regional print media, having previously worked at a community newspaper in Swan Hill, Victoria. Covering politics, local government and crime, Matteo likes to sink his teeth into hard-hitting issues, but also enjoys spending time getting to know the Gawler community. Matteo also has a passion for science, agriculture and the environment, and has previously worked as a media officer at the Australian Science Media Centre.

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