How Do I Get My Cat Down From That Tree?

3 min read
Jan 23, 2022

Cats often climb up high enough to where you are unable to reach them. Once they get up to their high place, they often have a difficult time getting back down to ground. Why wouldn’t they try to climb down? Cats do not often attempt to climb down on their own due to the risk of getting harmed. Once you see your cat in a high area, take a look around and see why she may have climbed that high. Based on the reason she climbed up to a high area, you may be able to persuade her to come back down on her own.

Why is my Cat in a Tree?

One reason your cat may have climbed to a high point is to escape a predator. Most of the time, the ‘predator’ is a dog. Your cat may also just be exploring, or perhaps they smelled something like food.  It's also possible your cat has spotted a birds nest.  Walk around the area she is near and see if there are any clues you can gather.  If nothing is clearly available, your cat may have just ‘felt like’ climbing. If she appears relaxed, she may have just wanted to be up high to relax for a bit. She may not have even considered climbing back down yet. Leave her where she is for a while and keep an eye on her. If she begins to whine or seems distressed, she is ready to get down. Sometimes, your cat will attempt to get down on her own.

If you are wondering why she is not getting down on her own, a cat’s claws are designed to help them up to a high place but not back down.
If your cat is still a kitten, she is not yet strong enough to hold on for a long period of time on her own. Full-grown cats may also be too weak to get down on their own. This is especially true in cold weather. If your cat is declawed, she may be incapable of returning to the ground on her own.

When to Call for Help?

If you are afraid of heights or not physically capable of climbing a ladder, it may be best to call for help.  The fire department is not responsible for rescuing cats unless the animal is in a burning building; so if this is not the case, you should save their time for fires. A local tree service is often able to assist you. The tree service has professional tree climbers on site who may be able to help rescue your kitty. If your cat is on a utility pole, only an electrical company professional is permitted to climb up. Call your electricity provider and inform them of the situation if this is the case. Neighbors may also have solutions.

Consider Cat Insurance

Falls can be expensive. Consider taking out an active cat insurance policy to help you protect your cats.

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Nothing in this article should be construed as financial, legal or veterinary advice. Please consult your own advisors for questions relating to your and your pet’s specific circumstances. 

1 Pet Insurance offered by MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions LLC is underwritten by Independence American Insurance Company (“IAIC”), a Delaware insurance company, headquartered at 485 Madison Avenue, NY, NY 10022, and Metropolitan General Insurance Company (“MetGen”), a Rhode Island insurance company, headquartered at 700 Quaker Lane, Warwick, RI 02886, in those states where MetGen’s policies are available. MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions LLC is the policy administrator authorized by IAIC and MetGen to offer and administer pet insurance policies. MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions LLC was previously known as PetFirst Healthcare, LLC and in some states continues to operate under that name pending approval of its application for a name change. The entity may operate under an alternate, assumed, and/or fictitious name in certain jurisdictions as approved, including MetLife Pet Insurance Services LLC (New York and Minnesota), MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions Agency LLC (Illinois), and such other alternate, assumed, or fictitious names approved by certain jurisdictions.