Cat Rescued After Spending 8 Days in Tree
Joni Smith, founder of Citizens for North Phoenix Strays, says she tried to rescue the cat, Brutis, a two-year-old tiger stripe, after she got a call from his owner. As she climbed a ladder, the officer ran out of the house waving his gun and badge, she said.
"I said 'I am going to call 911,'" Smith told PEOPLE Pets. "He said 'I am the police.'"
After the story ran on local ABC 15, people "from as far away as Maine called the chief of police and the mayor," says Smith. "The police department had enough."
A Phoenix police spokesperson said the officer was within his rights to deny rescuers access to his yard, but said the officer had offered to allow the Humane Society to enter and rescue the cat.
The cat's owner, who asked to be identified only as Michael, said Brutus looks like he's going to be okay.
"He's lost a lot of weight. When he went up he was kind of chunky and now he's boney," Michael said. "He used the litter box, sucked down a can of tuna and went to sleep."
Smith commended Michael, who had just started a new job after losing his house to foreclosure, for not abandoning his pet at a shelter, but hoped he'd be more careful with Brutis in the future.
"You got to spay and neuter and keep your pets inside," she said.
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