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I have a friend that found her cat stuck upside down behind her hot water heater in her small apartment, when she came home from work. If she'd found him any later, he would have died. He was not only traumatized, but severely dehydrated. In the past we've found our cat (Smokey) behind our clothes dryer. Fortunately for us, he's very loud and vocal when called. We've since made sure he can't get behind our washer and dryer set.
Make sure your cats can't get behind your water heater, your washer and dryer, or other unsafe places in the home. Obviously, always know where your kitty is when you shut your garage door!
By Cyinda from near Seattle
Very good tip, I'll do that this minute. Lucky cat, just in time!
My daughter was trying to help a friend who had taken one of her cats, while he was gone for a week.
On her first visit, she realized he had locked the cat in the house, and she didn't have a key to the house access door.
She left him several messages to see if he hid a key or something else that could be done. The next day, she reluctently cut a hole in the door so she could feed him food. He didn't seem dehydrated, so she was hoping he had gotton to the potty.
Even tho' she was saving her and his cat, and the hole was only 3" by 3" and it was his stupidity, he never spoke to her again. It was horribly immature of him. And for 18.00 at Home Depot, she offered to replace the door.
He still said she should have waited till he returned her call.
Even tho' it wasn't until he had been gone 6 days. You can all imagine the end of that plan.
Holes in floors, walls, and even drain pipes can be a death trap for rodents (gerbles, etc) or small pets.
Good advice all the way around.
A contractor left the access panel off of the tub and my young cat went iinside. He was able to get lost in the wall. I heard him from a vent downstairs and rescued him. A friend had a similar experience.
This story reminded me that cats will seek warm places at the expense of their safety. They are famous for crawling up onto warm engine blocks and being seriously hurt. I had never thought of the water heater or dryer, but it makes perfect sense.
I try to provide warm spots for my cats when the sun isn't out. They like a heating pad set very low under a folded flannel sheet (make sure it doesn't get too warm) I now have a cat bed on my desk with the desk swing arm lamp two or three feet above it. This seems to have kept them from getting too creative in finding the (dangerous) warm spot.