Stories of cats climbing into car engines are relatively common. It seems that cats enjoy the environment of an engine, and there are several reasons for this. First, cats like to find themselves somewhere warm for a nap, and engines stay warm for some time after the engine has been running. Second, engines are a dark place, which is something else that cats love, says Top Gear. Finally, kittens see engines as the perfect playground as they are filled with interesting nooks and crevices. While most cats come to no harm from having a quick nap in the warm engine of a stationary car, there are examples of cats who have found themselves in a tricky situation because of where they have chosen for their nap.
A kitten called Sparky is one feline who caused a dramatic situation after deciding that a car engine was the best place to grab forty winks. Cheezburger told the story of how this young kitten getting trapped inside an engine resulted in a car being dismantled to free him. The owner of the car in question is Zoe Slocombe. She had parked her car outside her home in Huntingdon, Cambridgeshire. Zoe was sitting in her lounge when she heard the sound of a cat meowing. She went outside and began to search for the cat, but she couldn’t see one anywhere. After listening carefully, she realized that the noise was coming from inside her car engine. She peeped under the bonnet and couldn’t see anything, but she could clearly hear that the kitten was trapped inside her car.
Not knowing how to tackle this situation and free the cat, she asked her father to help her. An added difficulty was that it had started to go dark, so Zoe and her father faced freeing the cat in darkness with only a small torch to offer them a little light. Drastic action was needed to locate and free the kitten, so Zoe and her father got to work. According to the BBC, the pair resorted to taking apart the front part of the car. Despite working by torchlight, they eventually saw a little furry bottom just inside the grille.
To free Sparky, Zoe’s father removed the wheel and the headlights. Even then, Sparky was reluctant to leave his warm hiding place. Zoe had to poke the kitten a little to encourage him to wriggle out of the area in which he was trapped. Fortunately, Sparky suffered no injuries as a consequence of choosing to sleep inside the engine. Zoe wrapped him up in a blanket and comforted the cat before contacting the RSPCA. The RSPCA then took Sparky into their care, checked him over, and took him to a vet for an examination. The practice manager at Cromwell Vets, Julie Eastham, said that it is lucky that Sparky was found. She explained that at his young age, he might not have survived if he been left alone. Although the cat was unharmed by his experience in the car engine, they discovered that he was riddled with fleas. Sparky also had a rather unpleasant temperament, which Eastham described as being very hissy and spitty.
Eastham went on to explain that they do not know if the cat is a feral cat or one that had been lost or abandoned. Since being in the care of the RSPCA, he is no longer a stressed and frightened cat that hisses and spits at everyone who approaches. Instead, he has become a cute and happy kitten. Now that his temperament has improved and he has been treated for fleas, it is hoped that they will soon find him a forever home where he can become a much-loved member of a family who will give him the care he needs. While Sparky was unharmed after getting trapped in a car engine, not all cats are so lucky. There are numerous stories of cats losing limbs, suffering from severe burns, and even being killed as a result of curling up in a car engine. In most cases, the injuries are caused when an unsuspecting car owner sets off for a drive in their car as they are unaware of the cat’s presence.
One example of this is the story of a cat called Henry from Baraboo, Wisconsin. Cole and Marmalade reported that Sauk County Humane Services were called out after Henry was found in a car engine. When the rescuers first saw Henry’s injuries, they thought that the cat had severe frostbite as a result of spending the night out in cold temperatures. On closer inspection, they were shocked to discover that his injuries had come from being trapped inside the engine of the car. One of Henry’s ears was severed right down to the ear canal, and the cat had a chunk of his skull missing. He also had many deep wounds to his head.
Henry was taken immediately for veterinarian treatment. Unfortunately, it was not possible to save his ear, and he needed extensive surgery to treat his wounds, involving the removal of a skin flap from another part of his body to cover the missing section of his skull and his missing ear. Following the surgery, he continued to need extensive care to prevent his wounds from becoming infected. Despite his extensive injuries, Henry remained cheerful and he continued to eat well. One of the biggest problems was that his owners were not identified, and his medical bills were quickly adding up. Fortunately, The Human Society was able to help by raising money to fund Henry’s treatment. So far, this has covered the cost of his surgery and his ongoing care. Thankfully, Henry has since made a good recovery following his traumatic ordeal and he is comfortable. However, his disfigurement is permanent as his injuries were so severe.