So Wanderland is undergoing a few changes these days. We’ve decided that due to the limitations of the house as it is, we are going to do short term AirBnB rentals in a portion of it. Our tenants have left and last week we started the process of installing a kitchenette in the area we’re closing off for rental. While running new plumbing, my husband ran across an odd hole in the crawlspace, pretty much almost fell into it. Looking down into the abyss, he saw a pair of glowing eyes at the bottom, and slowly, the reality of the situation became apparent. He was laying atop the mouth of what was most likely an old well, and there was a CAT at the very bottom of it, about 30 feet down, meowing pitifully.
After ascertaining it was not one of ours, we had some moments of complete panic and frustration about how to get the poor thing out. The hole is situated so putting a person or anything large down it was not really possible. Eventually, we decided on a soft sided basket with food in it on a rope, with a prayer the cat would get in and wouldn’t jump back out when we tried to raise the basket.
As it turns out, jumping out wasn’t an issue, she was so emaciated and weak she could barely walk, and we’re frankly surprised she was able to get IN the basket. When we got her back up, she was literally skin and bones and stuck to my husband like velcro.
A trip to the vet in the morning revealed she had probably been down there close to three weeks, and we got her out literally just in time.
The vet kept her for a couple of days, on an IV to get fluids and some nutrition into her, because she literally couldn’t eat enough on her own. She is home now, but she’s still really weak and has a little trouble walking. We’re working on getting her healthy again.
Of course we were dying to know what was down in the hole, because my husband could see other things, so he attached a go pro to a rope with a flashlight and sent it down the hole. Fair warning, you might not want to watch this alone in the dark.
We didn’t get the camera all the way to the bottom because it got stuck on something we couldn’t see. Maybe someday when we gut this house for a complete renovation, we’ll lift the floor above it and explore fully. Right now we’ve just put heavy boards across it so no other poor animal can fall down it. I’m really trying not to think about why there is a bathtub and someone’s clothing down there.
(oh, and we named kitty Baby Jessie and yes, we’re keeping her)