Cat survives 19 days with jar stuck on head


Feb 5, 2006

BARTLETT, Tenn. (AP) -- Tabitha Cain has fed a feral cat she calls Wild Oats for several years, but now she's thinking of changing its name to Survivor. That's because she says the Memphis-area cat survived for 19 days with a peanut butter jar stuck on its head.

"We tried to get her, but being the type of cat you can't catch, she kept running and hiding," said Doretha Cain, Tabitha's mother.

The family saw the cat several times and tried in vain to catch her. She disappeared for a week, and the Cains feared the worst.

"I thought she was going to die with that jar on her head," Tabitha Cain said.

They found the once chubby cat on Wednesday, too thin and weak to escape. They caught her with a fishing net and used some oil to get the jar off her head.
They gave her water and treated her wounds and on Friday she began to eat again.

"I've heard of cats having nine lives but I think this one has 19 because she survived 19 days," Doretha Cain said.

Memphis veterinarian Gerald Blackburn said he's heard similar stories of pets getting trapped for days or even weeks at a time and surviving. Blackburn said the cat may have lived off of its excess fat.

The family had called the Bartlett Animal Shelter for help, according to The Commercial Appeal in Memphis.

"We did set a trap," said Kim Scheu of the shelter division told the newspaper. "The cat never did go in the trap."

Scheu was pleased about the happy ending to the story, but told the newspaper that the whole affair could have been avoided.

"Apparently people are not disposing of their trash properly and that is one thing that is a serious problem," she said. "People need to understand that wildlife or any domestic animal will do something like that and it's dangerous."

There are bones, food and toxins in trash that can strangle or poison an animal, Scheu added.


Feb 5, 2006
the forest dim
oh my god, that's horrifying!!! poor thing! :sad: Glad it survived that, it's a miracle really! That's really close by where I live.


Addicted to Tiffany's
Apr 24, 2006
How sad! :sad:

What a kind woman, though, to care for the feral cats. Hopefully she does a humane trap/spay/release program, though, so the problem doesn't get worse.


Feb 5, 2006
I know how tragic this whole thing is but I would've loved to see a pic of the cat with the jar on her head. My puppy stuck her head in an empty oatmeal container this weekend and was walking around. I almost died laughing!


cat hoarder
Aug 23, 2006
Thank you for posting this, it has reminded me to always put the lids securely back on empty jars before throwing them away! There some feral cats that live around our local trash collection area and I would hate to inadvertantly cause them any harm.