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Cat lovers fined for stopping on a highway to save feline

CyberKitten
December 16th, 2004, 01:41 PM
This article was liklely also in the Montreal Gazette. I read it in rhe National Post on the plane and this is where it is online but you need to be a subscriber. Essentially, the police made it sifficult for these two people near Montreal to help rescue a starving kitten!

I was so outraged when I read it!! Lucky and others in the Mtl area, have you heard about this? I can type it out later if anyone really wants to read the entire article - unless somene here does sub to the Cititzen and can copy and paste fpr us? Thx!

http://www.canada.com/ottawa/ottawacitizen/news/story.html?id=77797f1b-f19d-4974-950a-08e3c7be42e7

whinnie-boo
December 16th, 2004, 02:00 PM
They were fined for rescuing an animal that certainly would never have made it away from the highway???? Thats ridiculious!!! How can they justify that? That can not possibly stand up in court. :mad: :evil: :eek:

CyberKitten
December 16th, 2004, 03:51 PM
Apparently, it is against the law in Quebec to stop on the highway (a certain part) and the woman involved did this - after she had gone to get help and to try to rtescue. Becaause the SQ (Quebec Police) refused to let them try to help the kitten, it froze and was hungry longer than necessary. And they will be charged the fine for breaking the Motor Vehicle law!! It is ridiculous I know!! (And if they had not called the SPCA, the kitten would still be there, sigh!)

If I have time, I'll try to write out the whole story. It is horrendous tho it has a happy ending!

BoxerRescueMTL
December 16th, 2004, 09:59 PM
it's ridiculous! apparently the SQ officers were laughing at the couple trying to save the cat, they asked them something like "why are you doing this? it's just a cat?" soooo stupid!! supposedly also they "shoo'd"(sp?) the cat away, just as the couple were about to catch it.....karma is all i have to say!

CyberKitten
December 17th, 2004, 02:38 PM
Yep, pne officer asked her "why are you doing this, it's just a cat!", (Grrrrrrr!!) and then when she and her friend almost had the cat, the other officer (I think - do not have article in front of me) scared it away. I hope they got their badge numbers!

My brother said he was driving in a NB city one day and he found a cat that had been hit by a car. he stopped (and this was long before he gave up his cozy and warm accounting job to become a firefighter, lol) He tried to flag down a police crusier but it kept going (probably thinking it was just a cat). he took down the plate number and reported the officer.

He managed to get the cat to a vet and after several thousand dollars of surgery later, she (he named her Tasha) is still a thriving concern. (She is now almost 10 years old and is scared of most people - no wonder - and will jump in bed with you and wants to be on your lap but alas, the moment someone comes in whose smell she does not recognize, she hightails it out of there and likes to hide).

So whatever happened to the poor kitty as a kitten could not have been good.

chico2
December 17th, 2004, 04:34 PM
Cyberkitty,what happened to the cat on the high-way???You said it had a happy ending?
Your brother must be a sweet-heart,does it run in the family?

CyberKitten
December 17th, 2004, 05:25 PM
Awwww, thx Chico! You are too kind!

I will type the "rest of the story" as that line goes - but pls excuse any typos and abbreviations (NOT my forte, lol) (Yin Yin thinks she should alternate between sitting on top of the monitor and whining - her own heated perch, lol and looking at her mouse and expecting her servant to go fetch)

I also hooked up my dad's scanner and scanned the picture from the article - it is not the best due to that and it is newsprint but it showsthe couple and the cat.


Pair Fined for Attempting to Rescue Kitty by Highway

Montreal


MONTREAL - A couple of cat lovers who saved a kitten abandoned by the side of the road have been fined $52 for their efforts.

SPCA shelter officials now caring for the starving six month old kitten believes someone tried to get rid of the animal by tossing it out of a fast moving vehicle on a highway north of Montreal.

But although the rescue operation started in the AM, the cat remained stranded till evening.

The cat's destiny changed onceCindy Mautone spotted "a bit of black fur" on the grass while driving to her office.

"The poor thing looked frightened and cold", she said. "He was stuck in the middle. There were 4 lanes packed with speeding cars on either side."

Involved in cat rescue, Ms. M decided to extricate the cat herself after calls to a Laval animal shelter and Transport Quebec failed to get action.

The shelter resfused to respond because it does not have a permot to operate on govt roads. Trans. Quebec responded but they drove off empty handed, leaving the cat behind.

"The cat was inaccessible, hiding in a sewer pipe.", Stephénie Langelier of Transport Quebec explained.

Ms. M, who returned to the scene with another cat lover, Geoff Rosborough, said the Trans, Quebec crew didn't try very hard. "I didn't even see them get out of the truck."

So Ms. M and Mr. R took up the mission personally. They went to Ms. M's home and returned with a cage baited with canned tuna.

The two had parked on median and were inchiong toward the kitten when two Sureté de Quebec cars pulled up, lights flashing and megaphones blaring.

"I thought they would do the decent thing but they yelled at us to get back in the car!", Ms. M said. "They kept asking us "Is it worth it to risk your life for a cat? It's only a cat."

"I said, absolutely! It's not just a cat, it's a life.", said Mr. R, who is angry that a police officer deliberately shooed the kitten away.

Mr. R and Ms M say the median is nearly 15 metres wide and parking there endangers no-one. Had the police not intervened, the cat would have been saved within minutes, Mr R said. "We were that close."

Polioce spokeswoman I. Gendron would not comment on the officers' behaviour but said parking on the highway yields an automatic ticket.

"It's not safe for anyone there., she said

A teary Ms. M, then called the SPCA. The shelter got police permission to rescue the cat but only after rush hour ended.

"We got him at 7 PM", SPCA head Pierre Barnoti confrimed. "He was starving, wet and very scared."

The kitten is being treated for an eye infection, raw paws and flea infestation.

"He's definitely domestic, purring like crazy", Mr B said. "If you want to get rid of a cat, bring it to the SPCA. Don't throw it out on the highway - it's criminal."

Despite the $52 fine, Mr R and Ms M would do the same thing again.

BMDLuver
December 17th, 2004, 07:28 PM
Great publicity for Bernotti and now he must keep it alive, health issues or not. Lucky little cat that it had so much publicity!

chico2
December 17th, 2004, 08:00 PM
Exactly what I was thinking,with Barnotis shelters kill-reputation,that cat would otherwise already be dead.
Too bad the people who spotted him did not keep him :(

glasslass
December 17th, 2004, 09:49 PM
They didn't keep him? I wonder what happened to him? He looks so affectionate!

CyberKitten
December 17th, 2004, 10:42 PM
GG, he is at the SPCA "pound" and as the others said, I hope the publicity helps him stay alive. Unfortunately, not everyone may be in a position to take in a cat. They may be in a rental where animals are permitted, in a family situation where pets would not do well, may not be able to afford one, have a job that takes them away too much or just be unable to give the pet the time and care the animal needs.

I think they are heroes for helping to recsue him. I just wish they had called one of the no kill rescues in the Mtl area tho you know, many people - I'd venture to say even most- are unaware of how many animals are killed by the SPCA or how that system works or even that other rescues exist. (and that is no fault of the rescue, think of the money it takes to advertise!)

Anyway, think gooid thoughts for this little guy! So far he is alive!! (and I doubt the SPCA will put him down now that he has had national publicity!)

chico2
December 18th, 2004, 08:45 AM
Yes CK,usually what happens,at least here in Ontario,if an animal ends up in the paper,tons of people will want to adopt him....I hope it's the same in Montreal.

CyberKitten
December 18th, 2004, 10:37 AM
Sorry Chico (I am too tired lately, lol) -- re the cat my brother found, she lived with him and his gf who became his wife and is still around. A wonderful beautiful cat! A litte timid but she's fine! Thx for asking~

Gazoo
December 18th, 2004, 04:54 PM
This article was liklely also in the Montreal Gazette. I read it in rhe National Post on the plane and this is where it is online but you need to be a subscriber. Essentially, the police made it sifficult for these two people near Montreal to help rescue a starving kitten!

I was so outraged when I read it!! Lucky and others in the Mtl area, have you heard about this? I can type it out later if anyone really wants to read the entire article - unless somene here does sub to the Cititzen and can copy and paste fpr us? Thx!

http://www.canada.com/ottawa/ottawacitizen/news/story.html?id=77797f1b-f19d-4974-950a-08e3c7be42e7


We don't really know the whole story though.

Maybe they were endangering people's lives or they could have done it in a safer manner??

Good on them though for saving the little beasty!!!! :angel:

CyberKitten
December 18th, 2004, 07:03 PM
I suppose it's true the article is written from the perspective of the people who rescued the cat. But I know I would have done the same thing. (I once almost stranded myself on a raft heading toward a serious falls trying to save a cat someone had attempted to drown (I was 12 at the time) and it was cold as well you know, he**. (It's too long a story for here, lol), I'd do the same thing again.

The authrorites said quite clearly that the woman broke the law by parking on the median. I know that is the law and it probably is effective most of the time (and I am all for promoting safe driving, <g>) but goodness, I just think the authorities here are being sort of like the grinch - personally if I were them, I'd go to court over the ticket (since so many people do not contest traffic tix, they might win by default since court cases get delayed) - I do believe the police did what they did since their spokesperson did not contest it - she rather preseumed to account for it.

So it remains that the cat might well have been saved a lot sooner and with less bureaucracy and ineffeciency!

I still think of these two are heroes.

Gazoo
December 18th, 2004, 07:14 PM
I suppose it's true the article is written from the perspective of the people who rescued the cat. But I know I would have done the same thing. (I once almost stranded myself on a raft heading toward a serious falls trying to save a cat someone had attempted to drown (I was 12 at the time) and it was cold as well you know, he**. (It's too long a story for here, lol), I'd do the same thing again.

The authrorites said quite clearly that the woman broke the law by parking on the median. I know that is the law and it probably is effective most of the time (and I am all for promoting safe driving, <g>) but goodness, I just think the authorities here are being sort of like the grinch - personally if I were them, I'd go to court over the ticket (since so many people do not contest traffic tix, they might win by default since court cases get delayed) - I do believe the police did what they did since their spokesperson did not contest it - she rather preseumed to account for it.

So it remains that the cat might well have been saved a lot sooner and with less bureaucracy and ineffeciency!

I still think of these two are heroes.


Again, I don't know the actual details other than the slanted media perspective, so I'd reserve my judgement on calling them heros.

What if they did something really dumba## and if where they parked put many other people at risk???

What if a family was killed b/c of what they did or they died in the process? :eek:

I love my fuzzbutts dearly but I would never ever ever ever put their lives ahead of any human life...mine or especially others lives.

twinmommy
December 18th, 2004, 08:07 PM
What's sad is that we don't have enough police to man the highways for all the drunk driving that is SURE to go on this season ( I always seem to see someone weaving all over the road!) but a KITTENwarrants 2 cop cars lights and sirens ablaze!!!

(And not for the GOOD of the poor kitty either!!! :mad: :mad:

CyberKitten
December 19th, 2004, 03:34 PM
Yep, two officers who show up and say "but it's JUST a cat", sighhhhh!!!

Anyone who has had any experience at all with the Sureté is bound to go with the perspective of these two. There may well be some great people there but they are no where near as professional as the RCMP. I know a Native community in Quebec fears them and during a salmon raid, they needless tormented people, espcially women and chilrden and vulnerable souls. And the two interviewed in this case did not speak well for their group, sigh!!

It's possible the two were obstructing traffic but if you know that area, stopping on a median is not likley to result in an accident. It is much more likely to have some large transport stopped on the side of the road cause an accident. Or not that I'll forget but a.... moose, lol

STAMPDesigns
December 20th, 2004, 10:06 AM
Glad to hear he was saved by two caring people. Job well done. I would have done the same thing, as a life is precious, no matter whether it be human or animal. I don't see how being parked in the median was a risk to other drivers, considering how they drive to begin with. The only way I can see it being a risk is if people were actually using the median as the speeding lane. The whole point of this isn't about the ticket anymore, it's about a kitten being safe and hopefully will soon be in a loving and safe home.

LavenderRott
December 20th, 2004, 10:13 AM
I am glad there is a happy ending but please realize that stopping on the highway can be VERY dangerous.

Last month, I think it was, a family stopped on the freeway to save a dog that was running in the median. The family van was hit and a young boy in the backseat was killed.

Schwinn
December 20th, 2004, 05:50 PM
I agree that these people deserve credit for rescuing the cat, but personally, if it were me, I would have pulled over on the right shoulder of the road. The reason it is illegal to pull over on the median isn't so much the danger of a parked car getting hit, but the danger of someone slowing down in the fast lane, or pulling out in the fast lane afterwards. We're trained that faster vehicles to the left, slower to the right. So when you are driving down the highway at 100+ kmh, and someone pulls onto the highway in front of you, it is VERY difficult to judge thier speed. If the highway was too busy to cross to the median (which, yes, is technically anytime because that too is illegal), it's definitely too busy to pull over on the left hand side. I don't think (but don't know for sure) the cops were trying to say "it's only a cat", but rather, "is it worth dying trying to rescue the cat?". I agree with the ticket, because it is EXTREMELY dangerous to merge into or out of traffic on the left hand side, but I think the cops could have done the decent thing and gotten the kitten themselves (that's what the big flashing things are for on the top of the cars, guys. And that's what I would have done)

CyberKitten
December 20th, 2004, 07:08 PM
Schwinn,

I am convinced that in some other life you work for some safety commission, lol (Ducking)

GMR
July 14th, 2005, 06:27 PM
Again, I don't know the actual details other than the slanted media perspective, so I'd reserve my judgement on calling them heros.

What if they did something really dumba## and if where they parked put many other people at risk???

What if a family was killed b/c of what they did or they died in the process? :eek:

I love my fuzzbutts dearly but I would never ever ever ever put their lives ahead of any human life...mine or especially others lives.

Perhaps this will help to clear things up about the location so that you can make an informed judgement:

The area in which the vehicle was parked (by Mr. R btw) was an area of medium that actually ran a good 30 or more yards across. The vehicle was also parked underneath an overpass so as to be out of view of highway traffic. The biggest risk to any families driving would have been their attempt to avoid hitting a kitten running across a highway, perhaps swerving into other vehicles. The SQ officers however did put other lives at risk when they scared the cat away, which was seconds from being rescued, causing the kitten to run (thankfully into a drainage pipe in the middle of the medium and not onto the road.) However the officer's position of parking (i.e. where they placed their vehicles) was not wise at all, and was immediately to the side of the road. Mr. R and Mrs. M would never have attempted the rescue if there was a risk to other drivers.

The media's position is pretty close to the events. The officers were extremely rude, highly aggressive and forceful. Their lack of compassion and desire to aid with the resure in any manner or form shows their characters. Mr. R. and Mrs. M were contacted the same day and subsequent days by the officer's superiors who were looking to impliment disciplinary actions against the officers. Whether or not anything became of that I do not know.

Good to see many here who believe that life is important, and that it just takes a moment of compassion to do what is right.

Schwinn
July 15th, 2005, 02:24 PM
The big difference is that a cop car pulled on the side of the highway, they have the big flashing emergency lights that warn other vehicles, and when they pull on, they are to keep the lights flashing, which requires other vehicles to pull over. An ordinary citizen's car doesn't, and pulling into the fast lane at 20 km is extremely dangerous, and not very smart, also illegal. The danger is where they were parked, it was the potential danger of them pulling back on the highway. A vehicle travelling up 100 km/hr faster than another is often imperceptible to the driver until they are much closer.

That being said, if the officers did in fact act in an unprofessional manner, then they do deserve some sort of disciplinary action.

chico2
July 16th, 2005, 07:06 AM
Quote"I love my fuzzbutts dearly but I would never ever ever ever put their lives ahead of any human life...mine or especially others lives."Quote

I hope I'm never in a situation where I have to make a choice,my animals are 100% dependent on me,for their life and safety..in a case of fire or anything similar,I probably would risk my life to save them.
I also know with certainty,I would never run over an animal even if it meant a fender-bender,cars can be fixed...I realize there can be more serious results,but again,I hope I never have to make such a choice..

CyberKitten
July 16th, 2005, 12:17 PM
I would definitey risk my life for mine! She is my baby!! I'd also do it for my foster babies!!

cutiepie_1980
September 9th, 2005, 11:25 AM
if it were me, I would have pulled over on the right shoulder of the road.
Just to clarify, in Quebec it is illegal to pull over on the highway on either side, except in the case of an emergency, so pulling over on the right would still have gotten them a ticket. To give you an idea, pulling over because you ran out of gas also gets you a ticket, as they say you should have been smart enough to fill up before.