Fugitive feline rescued, named

ASHLEIGH STEWART
Last updated 05:00 27/12/2012
Kitten rescue
KIRK HARGREAVES/Fairfax NZ

LIBERATOR: Firefighter Jason Nicholas was the hero of the day for retrieving a kitten from behind a car dashboard.

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A kitten sparked a rescue operation even before reaching its new Christchurch home after becoming wedged behind a car dashboard.

Bri Soal had picked up the kitten, an "impulse buy" from Trade Me, just an hour before she called firefighters to help rescue it from inside her car.

Soal had opened the car door upon arriving home with her purchase when the timid feline fled to a point of no return.

"It was a bit scared and it climbed up behind the dashboard - probably the highest place you can get," she said.

After trying in vain to retrieve the cat, she called fire crews, who had to pull apart her glovebox and dashboard in the rescue.

"Luckily one of the firefighters was a panelbeater so he knew what he was doing. Apparently they do this kind of thing now and again."

Both Soal and the firefighters were worried at "how squished he was", but the cat was eventually retrieved safe and sound.

Southern fire communications fire shift manager Andrew Norris said animal rescues were not common, but were "part of the job".

"But most animals are rescued from outdoor places ... we certainly don't have many cats in cars," he said.

The commotion did solve another dilemma following Soal's purchase of a new pet.

"The firefighters kind of named him for me - they called him Paparazzi."

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