Christie Peters was baking chocolate pie for Thanksgiving dinner — her husband’s favorite — when she received the call about the injured cat.
The director of Richmond Animal Care and Control (RACC) got a text from her colleague, RACC Officer Barbara Jones, asking what to do, WTVR-TV reported.
“Officer Jones sent me a text message at 8:06. And the text was, ‘I’m on a call with a bobcat stuck in the grill of a car – and he’s still alive.’”
“We’ve never done anything like this,” Peters said. “I didn’t want to make anybody else get out of bed on Thanksgiving morning, so I went with my dad.”
According to Peters, when she and her father responded to the scene, the driver told her that she had hit something while driving, but it wasn’t until she parked in Richmond an hour later and 50 miles away that she found the bobcat lodged in the grill of her Prius.
“When we walked by, he hissed at us, so he’s alive and may be OK, which was so crazy since she drove from Gloucester to VCU,” said Peters.
They worked to sedate him, before freeing him from the makeshift cage.
“And as he started to go limp, he started to drop a little bit lower,” Peters explained.
“And really, in reality, the only thing holding him up was a wire… to his underbelly and one plastic piece under his ribcage,” she told WTVR.
Officers Peter and Jones made sure to take precautions when carrying the bobcat, including using a catch pole around its neck. Miraculously, the bobcat came away with only a minor cut on its back.
“I’ve only ever seen one once in real life like running across a road somewhere,” Peters said. “We just don’t ever get a chance to be so close to such beautiful, wild creatures and it was just wonderful to know that he made it through such a weird, crazy situation.”
Wildlife officials said they’ll eventually release the bobcat back into the woods near the accident.
“Animal Control is so funny, you never know what you’re going to walk into,” Peters said. “It’s perfect that it was Thanksgiving … because it was just a miracle and we’re so grateful that it ended the way that it did.”
A similar situation occurred in September in Alberta, Canada, when a woman hit a coyote, according to WJW TV. The woman, Georgie Knox, believed the animal was dead and continued her 20 mile journey to Calgary. After she arrived, she realized the coyote had survived the trek.
“Upon stopping at a traffic light by my work, a construction woman notified me that there was in fact a coyote still embedded in my car,” she wrote. “When I got out to look, this poor little guy was looking up and blinking at me,” Knox wrote on a now-deleted Facebook post.