Kitten rescue a team effort

Published 2:04 pm Sunday, August 4, 2019

By Diana McFarland

Managing editor

The kitten was a tiny thing, perched at the end of Melodi Shewmaker’s porch.

Skittish too, as he ran off in the woods when she opened the door. Shewmaker didn’t know where the kitten came from as she and her family live in the woods off Muddy Cross Road.  

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Shewmaker’s daughter, Leah, heard the kitten meowing while driving down Route 17 on her way to work. 

Fearing it was in the engine area, Leah pulled over at Dashing Dogs off Carrollton Boulevard. Employees there came out to help her find the kitten, to no avail, despite the meowing, said Shewmaker. 

Leah took the car across the street to Ferguson Automotive where mechanics Donnie Wilkinson and Blake Ferguson put the car up on the racks to get a better look.

The mechanics removed a fender and there he was, a ball of fur wedged on a ledge in the wheel well, said Melody.

The mechanics were able to pick up the kitten, but it wriggled loose and ran into the woods, said Ferguson manager James LeBlanc. 

Ferguson chased after the kitten and caught him. 

The kitten, in return, bit Ferguson, said LeBlanc. 

“It was a little bite,” said LeBlanc.

Shewmaker was impressed with the employees at Dashing Dogs and Ferguson.

“They didn’t have to do that,” she said of the willingness to drop what they were doing to help out. 

Shewmaker’s co-worker, Chera Edwards, at Signature Styles in Smithfield, had been looking for a cat and volunteered to take it. Edwards picked up the kitten and took it home to her husband, daughter, two dogs and a parrot. 

Initially the bigger dog, Magnus, was afraid of the kitten as it sat in his toy basket, said Edwards, laughing. The little dog, Axel, made fast friends, she said. 

Fortified with a trip to the veterinarian and a large supply of “top of the line” cat food, the kitten has settled in, said Edwards.

His name is Fender. 

“We’re in heaven this week,” said Edwards.