A 40-FOOT-FALL and two weeks sleeping rough would be enough to use up most cats’ nine lives.
But one-year-old Cheeky suffered no more than a chipped tooth and a few lost pounds following the ordeal.
The adventurous cat was reunited with her owner Lawrence Fraser at the weekend after plunging from the fourth-floor balcony of his flat in Bonnington and then going into hiding for a fortnight.
The Scottish SPCA was called to rescue Cheeky, below, after distraught Lawrence, 30, discovered she had escaped through an open patio door on August 4.
Lawrence, a senior reservations consultant for Osprey Holidays in Edinburgh, originally thought Cheeky had scrambled up on to the roof of the block but animal rescue officer, Connie O’Neill, checked from a neighbouring building and the tortoiseshell cat was nowhere to be seen.
Lawrence, above, searched day and night to find Cheeky, putting up more than 200 posters around the local area, enlisting the help of friends and neighbours, and contacting every vet and cattery in the area. He took three days off work in a bid to find his beloved cat.
Finally, almost two weeks after Cheeky first went missing, a neighbour spotted the elusive cat at her back door.
However, Cheeky was too scared to come close enough to be caught so Lawrence contacted the Scottish SPCA again and the animal welfare charity set a trap with cat food inside. The following day – Saturday – Cheeky was finally caught and reunited with Lawrence.
Lawrence said: “I’m so happy to have Cheeky home and she hasn’t left my side since – she’s even sleeping cuddled up next to me in bed.
“I’m so over the moon to be honest. Finding her is a total miracle.
“I took her to the vet and the only injury she’s got from the fall is a chipped tooth. She’s also lost weight from being outdoors on her own but she’s making up for it by wolfing down four meals a day. She ate like it was her last meal when I got her home.
“I think she has learnt her lesson now, she’s had quite an adventure. She has not gone near the balcony door since.
“I had her spayed the week before this happened, which was lucky as she might have come back with kittens.”
Mrs O’Neill added: “We’re really happy Cheeky is now back home with her owner after what must have been a very worrying ordeal.
“This was the first time Cheeky had ever been outdoors. She was clearly petrified after her fall, but thankfully hunger led her to the trap and she is now safe and well.
“Lawrence clearly loves his pet very much and went to great lengths to find her. We’re really glad all his efforts have paid off.”