Firefighters in Dartmouth rescue kitten trapped in a wall

HALIFAX – Smudgey, a four-month-old kitten, was adopted and brought to his new home in Dartmouth on Wednesday morning. Hours later, a fire truck was parked outside that home and a handful of firefighters were busy inside trying to find him.

“The kitten found a hole in the wall and went into that hole that accessed a fair bit of the house, so we were asked to come over with our infrared camera to see if we could help,” said Halifax Fire captain Grant Withers.

Withers said the kitten wasn’t making any sound, so he didn’t give firefighters any hints as to where he was hiding within the walls. The cat also kept moving, which made an infrared camera the firefighters had brought to find it ineffective.

“It only detects heat of the surface it sees, so on any surface that’s regular room temperature, it won’t have any impact,” explained Withers. “The kitten would have had to sit in the same spot for several minutes, then it would have radiated the heat to the surface, so it was of no use to us in this case.”

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The only option was to cut holes in different spots and use a remote camera to try to track down the cat. It took about 40 minutes and four holes, but the firefighters were able to complete the rescue.

Withers says calls like these are extremely rare.

“We do help animals occasionally, but for them to get into a wall, it was kind of a one-in-a-million [change], and he found the one spot he could get in,” he said.

Smudgey’s new owner says the kitten is now doing fine.

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