East Bay firefighters find furry surprise inside car engine

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It took a special kind of “mechanic” to fix the engine troubles of one Brentwood mother’s car.

When the woman and her son pulled up to East Contra Costa Fire Protection District’s Station 52 on Thursday she knew something was inside her engine and she suspected it was of a furry animal nature. Firefighters took a look but were unable to see a thing before being sent out on a 911 call.

East Contra Costa Fire Protection District firefighters and Contra Costa Animal Services found a bundle of kittens hiding in a car engine in Brentwood on April 29, 2021. They could hear the hissing but it took some time and effort to free the kitties from their precarious position. 

“Right then the bells went off and we were sent to another two 911 calls in a row,” a district spokesman wrote on Facebook.

As they pulled out on the call, firefighters asked dispatchers to call Contra Costa Animal Services, which arrived a short time later.

When firefighters returned, Contra Costa Animal Services Officer Ryan Sutton was looking into the engine compartment. He used a tool to reach down inside the engine and every time he poked in he could hear some hissing yet he couldn’t reach the animal, he said.

Sometimes it takes another pair of hands — and another tool. Firefighters then gave it a try, the spokesman said, helping to wiggle the little ones out of their precarious position.

Contra Costa Animal Services Officer Ryan Sutton holds a tabby kitten he and others from East Contra Costa Fire Protection District helped rescue from their poor hiding place inside an engine in Brentwood on April 29, 2021. 

“We got some tools and loosened the engine splash cover and what did we find but five baby kittens not a few days old,” he said.

The firefighters and animal services officer found four orange tabby cats kittens and two black ones, and in the process learned that 80% of orange tabbies are male. All three here were male.

The animal services officer said the kittens will see a veterinarian before being put into foster care and later made available for adoption.

With kitten season in full swing, there are plenty of other furry friends looking for good homes. To see a full list of available cats and fill out an adoption application, go to the Contra Costa Animal Services website at https://www.contracosta.ca.gov/7886/Available-Cats


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